Barbie Explores the Real World

Maggie Collins

Editor, Arts and Entertainment

PC: Click the City

As I’ve entered my “roaring twenties” I can’t help but look back on the simpler days. The days where I only worried about play dates with Barbies and Littlest Pet Shops, dressing up to dance to High School Musical and “going on an adventure” to the backyard. I always welcome the comforting feeling of nostalgia from watching a childhood movie or looking through old photos. This is why I was incredibly happy to hear of a new Barbie movie being released, which seems to be gaining a lot of attention. In fact, filters have already been created on Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok. 

Barbie movies were always a favorite of mine as a kid because they seemed to bring the unrealistic world to life by using dolls I played with every day. They seemed to capture all the dreams of a young girl in each movie: wearing extravagant colorful outfits, finding your true love, being a princess and going on adventures with mystical creatures. They always seemed to bring our fantasy world to our very own eyes.

Contradictory to past movies, the new Barbie movie will use a more realistic approach. More information is slowly being released about the movie, but it seems that the producers are wanting to keep a majority of the movie cloaked in mystery. The movie description states that a doll living in Barbie Land is expelled for not being perfect enough and sets off to find adventure in the real world, but not much is mentioned about her leaving Barbie Land in the actual trailers. 

Still maintaining the “Barbie” style, we get a bright and toy-like world, reminding us of the childhood Barbie we all know and love. However, looking closely at the released trailers, you can get small details that show this movie is much more realistic and inclusive than Barbie was in the early 2000s in my childhood.

 Straight from the beginning of the most recently released trailer, we can see that the outsides of the bright and colorful Barbie Land is much darker and dull, giving it a dystopic feel. Later in the trailer, we see a Barbie with a prosthetic arm and another in a wheelchair, making this movie more inclusive down to the smaller details. 

Additionally, as Barbie is shown going down the road in her car, she passes a movie theater that looks to be playing Wizard of Oz. This small, but intentional detail makes me wonder if it will have a similar storyline to that famous film. Possibly where Barbie looks for something else in the real world that she can’t find in “Barbie Land.”

The casting seems to be spot on with Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken. In addition, Will Ferrell, Kate McKinnon, Emma Mackey, America Ferrera, and Michael Cera were cast in this movie. All of Barbie’s original friends are included in the trailer, truly bringing the whole world to life. 

From my childhood of the Barbie with the permanent makeup, perfect body, perfect house, and perfect friends, I’m excited to see that a realistic turn has been put on Barbie’s world. They seem to be tackling the very subject of the unrealistic expectations that Barbies set for us as kids. 

Based on the trailers, I do feel that this movie is geared more toward the generation who grew up with the original Barbie movies, as it does seem to have more adult humor added to it. However, I do still think that it could be enjoyed by all ages. It is set to be released this summer on July 21st only in theaters.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, featured


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