Barbie Movie Review Rating:

Star Cast: Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Simu Liu, Emma Mackey, Dua Lipa, Kingsley Ben-Adir, America Ferrera, Will Farrell, and ensemble.

Director: Greta Gerwig

Barbie Movie Review
Barbie Movie Review ( Photo Credit – IMDb )

What’s Good: Greta, with her brilliance, uses Barbie to slash every unconventional standard that Barbie eventually set over the years, only to show that it was never the idea she was made with. The best part is that she doesn’t ridicule men in the process.

What’s Bad: The movie ends up over-explaining its cause at a point, and that takes away from the magic for a brief bit.

Loo Break: Nothing should make you even take your eyes away from the screen; break shouldn’t be even thought of.

Watch or Not?: This is a historic juncture in world cinema where two era-defining movies release on the same day. You aren’t allowed to miss either. Watch Barbie on the big screen, please.

Language: English (with subtitles).

Available on: In Theatres Near You.

Runtime: 114 Minutes.

User Rating:

In Gerwig’s telling of the story about the iconic doll, the world of Barbie comes alive as she believes she has reshaped womanhood to its absolute brilliance only to fall into the real world and realise patriarchy has messed things for her gender too badly. Her way to bring back order to the world when toxicity knocks on its door is what makes the movie stand out.

Barbie Movie Review
Barbie Movie Review ( Photo Credit – IMDb )

Barbie Movie Review: Script Analysis

For a filmmaker whose last two movies with an Oscar nod in the kitty were about people liberating and women finding their feat, decides to make her third feature, a live-action narration of one of the most debatable characters, and make a movie so unserious but also super politically aware, is the most intriguing part of this deal. The announcement that Barbie would get a live-action movie resulted into an uproar that settled once the mighty Greta Gerwig was attached to it. But what does she bring to the table with a character that has been called the epitome of unconventional beauty standards?

Greta, with writer Noah Baumbach (Marriage Story) by her side creates a tale that has been mostly told by men and in the favour of their gender. Barbie, created by a woman, was always dictated by the men at Mattel (the company that owns the rights to the doll). So when a bunch of men sitting in a posh conference room are talking about how to reflect ‘women’s agency’ in their doll while no single feminine soul exists in the room, you know what Greta is talking about. It is a political film from the word go. The Pink is not to be considered as a breezy movie with song and dance; it is instead a critique of the time we live in through the eyes of one of the most criticised characters of all time, who is actually just an idea.

The fact that Barbie was always everything that women should be (minus the obsession with unconventional looks of course) is what makes the charcter a perfect person. She was supposed to be the doctor, lawyer, Nobel Price winner, and rule the world, and Ken existed to serve her, was the idea to promote the prominence of the gender that was deemed as weaker. Yes, she did walk on a problematic path with the representation, but that path was chosen for her by men, and patriarchy doomed that too. So when Margot Robbie’s Barbie cannot process the fact that a segment of real-world actually hates her, the honesty in her eyes shines more because she never intended to do the harm that her presence unknowingly did. Again, dictated by patriarchy.

The writing actually peaks when Greta and Noah begin telling the story through Ken. A doll who was made to serve Barbie and never really explored. A character with no brain, but only a heart that knows one thing, beating for Barbie. When the real world touches him, he learns about patriarchy, the unnecessary importance given to men like they world revolves around them, and how the Barbie world has looked at Ken’s as a secondary character. He takes the toxicity to the pink world, and that is such a brilliant trajectory to witness. The non serious approach to an issue that is the cause of half of the world’s problems is fascinating, but the commentary on it is on point.

The writing understands what the intent is and delivers that with intricate detailing about the real and Pink world. But the best part is that it doesn’t ridicule men when they get toxic. It gives them enough benefit of the doubt and a moment to reassess and correct. The only thing Barbie goes haywire is when it begins over-explaining itself for a very brief moment. But it is Gerwig, and she knows how to make everything work.

Barbie Movie Review
Barbie Movie Review ( Photo Credit – IMDb )

Barbie Movie Review: Star Performance

One has to celebrate both Barbie and Oppenheimer for the casting these movies have managed to pull off. The two combined has covered mostly the entire active Hollywood and are so impactful. Margot Robbie is one of the top-tier best in this generation, and she deserves to be nominated for every possible award. Just adapting to the mannerism of Barbie and then gradually bringing humanness to it is in itself a tough job. Every time Margot is surprised as the titular character is a treat, because you can see how well she has accepted the reality of the character as her own to look at the plastic doll so efficiently.

Ryan Gosling and his abs are a standout, and our man has to be celebrated for entirely reshaping everything we have learned about him so far as an actor. Ken, the most ignored Barbie character, gets so much here, and his character goes through an entire journey that, in a way, shapes the entire movie. It is Barbie’s realisation of her impact through Ken and finding their redemption together. Ryan can sing, dance, be vulnerable, stupid, and adorable in one frame without cuts. If he doesn’t get an Oscar nomination for Ken, I ain’t watching the Oscars this year.

Simu Liu is charming, and he can impress you even when he is in the background. Will Ferrell, as Mattel’s head, is so hopelessly chauvinist that you will want to punch him in the face (that’s a compliment). Kate McKinnon, as weird Barbie, represents the Barbies we all tortured and is such a brilliantly written and executed part. The ‘Oh so amazing’ Emerald Fennell makes a brief appearance and one that hits you hard.

Barbie Movie Review
Barbie Movie Review ( Photo Credit – IMDb )

Barbie Movie Review: Direction, Music

For a filmmaker heavily inspired by 2001: A Space Odyssey, Greta Gerwig pays homage to not one but multiple things that she, as a filmmaker, respects and adores. Zack Snyder’s Cut Of Justice League gets a nod in a pivotal scene, John Cena’s image as a man who can beat anyone to pulp is broken in the most cutest way, and much much more. Her gest to tell stories of women while making it clear that she doesn’t hate men but wants them to be allies is how progressive filmmaking should look like.

Her direction never alienates the audience and doesn’t let the seriousness of her otherwise hilarious screenplay overpower the movie’s vibe. She brings in Hellen Mirren to sprinkle magic through her voice and makes a superb decision. The editing is done with care, and DOP Rodrigo Prieto’s frame creates the magic they are supposed to and even more.

The music is a vibe, and Ryan Gosling singing a song outdoes everything. Tune in right away because this album will be trending for a while. One complaint, though, Barbie Girl plays in the end credits; I wish it was in the film somewhere.

Barbie Movie Review: The Last Word

In Greta Gerwig, we all must trust and invest every penny saved for the movies. The pink is here to paint the world, and the Kens must be the allies who pass the brush.

Barbie Movie Review
Barbie Movie Review ( Photo Credit – IMDb )

Barbie Trailer

Barbie releases on 21 July, 2023.

Share with us your experience of watching Barbie.

For more recommendations, read our The Flash Movie Review here.

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