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The Student News Site of Fluvanna County High School

The Fluco Beat

The Student News Site of Fluvanna County High School

The Fluco Beat

Barbie cut-out in the Charlottesville Alamo Drafthouse theater. Photo courtesy of Fluco Journalism.
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Barbie cut-out in the Charlottesville Alamo Drafthouse theater. Photo courtesy of Fluco Journalism.

Is Barbie Worth the Hype?

Everybody is babbling about “Barbie.”

When the new “Barbie” movie came out in theaters on July 21, millions of people were expecting “Barbie” to appear to just a younger audience, but based on its current box office of $1 billion globally, many older audience members have flocked to and apparently enjoyed the movie as well.

According to Texas Public Radio, “Barbie” is about two worlds: the real world and Barbie Land. Without giving away too much of the plot, let’s just say that somehow Barbie ends up in the real world when she starts to notice her own imperfections. Ken, who at the start of the movie is basically just an accessory for Barbie, comes with her. Together, they meet the human who is causing Barbie’s flaws, leading to a journey of self discovery for both of them.

This journey is likely what has made so many people love the movie so much. In the movie, a monologue by supporting character Gloria (played by actress America Ferrera) shares the hardships women face daily: the need for perfection and having the “perfect” body, sexism, the wage gap, and a host of inequalities with men.

I’d say this speech, as well as the points this movie makes about women in our society, is definitely the reason for all the hype. People, mostly women, like that something they have long felt before is finally being said out loud on the big screen.

In fact, a lot of people on YouTube are making clips of the speech and well it expresses the struggles of being a woman in today’s society. Screen Rant on Youtube made a video about all the empowering moments in the movie, so if you want to see the movie’s high points, definitely watch that video.

Is “Barbie” worth the hype? The movie is definitely funny at times, with little remarks here and there and even a few innuendos, most of which may go over younger audiences’ heads. The soundtrack, with music from Lizzo, Sam Smith and Dua Lipa, sets a good vibe too. Meanwhile, Margot Robbie (as Barbie) and Ryan Gosling (as Ken) do a wonderful job of expressing their characters and making you feel for them.

But is the film for everyone? Its rating says otherwise. Not all parents are going to want to bring their seven-year-old to a PG-13 movie. That’s a shame, because the movie’s message is very empowering to women and shows how women can have any job and do whatever they have a passion for.

At the same time, a number of people have complained that the movie is too “anti-man.” Why? You could argue that the male characters (especially Ken) are just sort of “there.” Journalist Piers Morgan calls “Barbie” “An assault on not just Ken, but all men.” As noted in Fashion Magazine, in Barbie Land, “Kens don’t really matter.”

Still, others argue that “Barbie” isn’t really anti-men, as much as it is anti-patriarchy, criticizing a society created and run by men, rather than men themselves.

So what do audiences think? According to Rotten Tomatoes, the audience score for “Barbie” is 84% positive.

As for me, I’d say that while the movie is entertaining, funny, and has a good message, it isn’t anything over the top. It didn’t grab my attention the way other movies that have strong female characters, like “Mulan” and “Moana,” have done. These movies also express the message that women can do anything, but without throwing men to the side as in “Barbie.”

“Barbie” is a good movie, but not a great one. I feel as if I hadn’t watched it I wouldn’t have missed out on much.

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