July 26, 2023


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We laughed, we cried (at least I did), we wanted to see it again!

I absolutely loved Barbie. I was expecting the camp, and the humor…but I wasn’t expecting the existentialism. The film asks, what does it mean to exist as doll, as a woman, as a human in this world…in any world, for that matter? Whether or not Barbie (or the audience) eventually learn the answer – that’s beside the point. The point is that Barbie, and by extension, Ken, all dolls, all men, all women, and all humans, have reached the point in their evolution that they have the luxury of waxing philosophical about their place in the universe, as opposed to just surviving. The film handles the subject deftly, and with heart.

It’s obvious that Greta Gerwig is a film-obsessed weirdo…because I’m a film-obsessed weirdo. I already knew about Barbie as the Monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey from the trailer. I was also delighted to see nods to The Matrix, The Wizard of Oz, Grease and many other films.

For a hot minute, I thought the film was coding Barbie as a lesbian. Birkenstocks, Indigo Girls, Kate McKinnon…the signs were all there! That interpretation is too easy though. I realized that those codes were used more as movie shorthand for “coming out”. The process of “coming out” can be applied to lots of things besides sexual orientation or gender identity. I just “came out” as a Barbie-obsessed weirdo at work…and I’ve worked there over 22 years. I was nervous about it…heck, I’m still nervous about it. I’ve been teased a little bit – but actually LESS than I’ve been teased about being 6’1 or obsessed with hummingbirds. It’s been close to fine…so far.

I don’t think I’ve seen Ryan Gosling in a single film before Barbie. Not The Notebook, not La La Land, not a single one. His portrayal of Ken MADE the film. I feel like I should check out some of his other stuff, but obviously NOT one of the RomComs…where should I start?

Greta Gerwig really stuck the landing with the ending. I was literally CACKLING in the theater. I wish I would’ve stood up and given a standing ovation.

Backtracking for a moment to talk about the trailers…the only one that looked mildly interesting was the second attempt at The Haunted Mansion. Another Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film? Meh. Gran Turismo is not my thing, although my husband may be interested – he played the shit out of that game in the early 00s. I would literally rather shove knitting needles in my eye sockets than watch a Trolls movie. Oh! I forgot about the “reimagining” of The Color Purple. I love me some Colman Domingo – his voice is like butter.

I cannot WAIT for Barbie to be streaming on MAX. I’m predicting a Thanksgiving time frame, but fingers crossed for sooner.

Year – 2023
Rating – PG-13
Runtime – 114 minutes
Genre – Comedy
Director(s) – Greta Gerwig
Writer(s) – Greta Gerwig, Noah Baumbach
Actor(s) – Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, America Ferrera
BOB Rating – Four BOBs
Favorite Quote – "I do not have a vagina and he does not have a penis. We have no genitals." - Barbie (Margot Robbie)

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