The Hilarious Mess that is Barbie Review

The Hilarious Mess that is Barbie Review
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The Hilarious Mess that is Barbie Review. OK, listen. Barbie is a really funny, complicated mess of ideas and thoughts and occasionally knocks the ball completely out of the park. But it also occasionally goes down swinging in its attempts. On the whole, I really thought the movie a poignant discussion about women in society and their unrealistic expectations.

However, there is one moment in the movie, one soliloquy that should be nominated for monologue of the year award – it is so poignantly inspiring and eye opening. We’ll get to that in a moment. But this week was a crazy week for me in the film world – three back-to-back days of watching Opje – and then Barbie? hahaha. I think the whiplash might have snapped my neck if I hadn’t seen it coming.

“It is literally impossible to be a woman. You are so beautiful, and so smart, and it kills me that you don’t think you’re good enough. Like, we have to always be extraordinary, but somehow we’re always doing it wrong. You have to be thin, but not too thin. And you can never say you want to be thin. You have to say you want to be healthy, but also you have to be thin. You have to have money, but you can’t ask for money because that’s crass. You have to be a boss, but you can’t be mean. You have to lead, but you can’t squash other people’s ideas. You’re supposed to love being a mother, but don’t talk about your kids all the damn time. You have to be a career woman, but also always be looking out for other people. You have to answer for men’s bad behavior, which is insane, but if you point that out, you’re accused of complaining. You’re supposed to stay pretty for men, but not so pretty that you tempt them too much or that you threaten other women because you’re supposed to be a part of the sisterhood. But always stand out and always be grateful. But never forget that the system is rigged. So find a way to acknowledge that but also always be grateful. You have to never get old, never be rude, never show off, never be selfish, never fall down, never fail, never show fear, never get out of line. It’s too hard! It’s too contradictory and nobody gives you a medal or says thank you! And it turns out in fact that not only are you doing everything wrong, but also everything is your fault.

“I’m just so tired of watching myself and every single other woman tie herself into knots so that people will like us. And if all of that is also true for a doll just representing women, then I don’t even know.”

The Hilarious Mess that is Barbie Review - while all over the place organizationally, its heart is decidedly in the right place.

I mean – doesn’t that just crack your skull wide open? Or maybe you’re wondering why I’m not realizing this is obvious? Well, that is because I’m a guy… and I’m not subjected to this sort of chaos in my normal daily life obviously. Anyway, for me, this one extremely impassioned quote, all alone, and by itself, makes the whole movie worth while. Yes, Ryan Gosling’s bland-Ken turned overlord Ken, and equine-Ken was glorious. But ultimately, the movie is all about women, and a woman’s place in this world, and our need to empower and support our women. And, on the whole, it did a decent job of calling this out. Even if it didn’t all logically make sense. (An overly sexualized/idealized woman doll is the perfect mascot for women’s rights because a Barbie came to life in the real world in order to find her owner and support her and her daughter so that they can ultimately come help save Barbie-land? Don’t look too closely at the sun, people, it could damage your eyes!)

But it was funny. There are many bits that had me laughing out loud. So, maybe that was really the only thing that mattered. Laughing was good. And the heart of the movie’s desire to support, bolster, and encourage women. All good things, all good things. I, for one, am not going to tirade against the movie all the while throwing away Barbies and lighting them on fire. Definitely not.

Edited by: CY