‘Barbie’ Bringing her World to Life

When I was young I remember every little girl growing up with their favorite Barbie doll. To them Barbie was everything, an  educated, well respected person who can be anything they wanted to be.  The sky was the limit and everything a boy could do a girl could do better.  This is why Barbie was created, to make the world a better place for girls, so they can finally see that they are as good as any boy can be. In the world of Barbie this is what they believe, and it is how their world is run, by women. Barbie runs everything and the men are just there to support the Barbie’s.

In the Land of Barbie, you have the original Stereotypical Barbie (Margot Robbie), who sees everything as it should be. Then there is President Barbie (Issa Rae), Dr. Barbie (Hari Nef), Writer Barbie (Alexandra Shipp), Physicist Barbie (Emma Mackey), Lawyer Barbie (Sharon Rooney), Diplomat Barbie (Nicola Coughlan), Judge Barbie (Ana Cruz Kayne), Journalist Barbie (Ritu Arya), and Mermaid Barbie (Dua Lipa), who run their universe.  There to support the original Barbie, is Ken (Ryan Gosling), but he is also joined by many other Ken’s that follow their Barbie’s, like Ken #1 (Kingsley Ben-Adir), Ken #2 (Simu Liu), Ken #3 (Scott Evans), Ken #4 (Ncuti Gatwa), and Kenmaid (John Cena). Then there are the discontinued dolls or dolls that were mistreated, like Allan (Michael Cera), Ken’s friend, Midge (Emerald Fennell), the pregnant dolls, and Weird Barbie (Kate McKinnon), that still exist in the magical land. 

Everyday everything is perfect for Barbie. Everyone is working hard and the world is as it should be run by Barbie. While Ken’s world revolves around Barbie, and is nothing without her. Barbie believes that she and her friends help make the world a better place and only exist to support all women.

One day things start to go wrong for Barbie. She is not able to function like she did before. Her everyday presence is starting to fade away. Barbie decides to consult Weird Barbie, a version of the doll that was abused by her handler and made to look weird. She then tells Barbie she must go to the real world to find the girl who has lost faith and off she goes to uncover this problem.

In the real world, Barbie meets many interesting characters, but most importantly she encounters America Ferrera as Gloria, a Mattel employee who helps Barbie in the real world, and her daughter Sasha (Ariana Greenblatt). While trying to find answers, all three of them meet Aaron Dinkins (Connor Swindells), a Mattel intern, Ruth Handler (Rhea Perlman), and CEO of Mattel (Will Ferrell). Here is where the adventure takes off and brings you into the conflict of our domain with the politically correct realm of Barbie.

Director and writer Greta Gerwig presents an outstanding depiction of Barbie and her life among all the different Barbie’s. She also depicts Barbie’s stereotypical representation of women and how it affects the struggles they have in the business world today. In the real society Greta shows how male dominated this business realm is and also imposes that Mattel is to. Some issues I did come across during the film was that Gerwig presented many conflicts and struggles that became too difficult to resolve those battles effectively. For instance, How Barbies influences the girls in today’s society, Ken’s total existence revolves around Barbie, and the desire she has to be part of the real world and not be a stereotypical character anymore. These examples seemed to give the impression that Women don’t need men and they should not be so dependent on women. Finally, the acting by the entire cast was pleasant and wonderful and there were some funny instances presented in Barbie style.

This fairly enjoyable film that entertained throughout the storyline, is worth seeing in person. It is a good time for all to see and of course be that little girl or boy again and dress up as your favorite Barbie or Ken.

Final Comment: I based my grade on the entertaining narrative, and delightful acting by the cast.

Stars 3.5 out of 5

BARBIE opens July 21st from Warner Bros.


Additional Film Information

Cast: Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, America Ferrera, Ariana Greenblatt, Kate McKinnon, Helen Mirren, Will Ferrell, Simu Liu, John Cena, Michael Cera, and Rhea Perlman.
Directed and written by: Greta Gerwig
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, and Romance.
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for suggestive references and brief language.
Running Time: 1 hour and 54 minutes.
Release Date:  July 21, 2023
Distributed By: Warner Bros.
Release In: Dolby Digital and Standard.