Barbie: A Fairytale for the Girl Supremacy

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Welcome to Barbieland, where everything is happy, confident, successful, and (of course) pink. It's a place where you have everything... unless you're a man.

Barbieland is populated by Barbie and Ken, in multiple varieties, with a little nod to Barbie's pregnant friend Midge, her little sister Skipper, and Ken's friend Allan (Michael Cera). Our focus, though, is on Stereotypical Barbie (Margot Robbie) and Stereotypical (and completely clueless) Ken (Ryan Gosling), as Barbie suddenly finds her reality changing when she begins thinking about death, fighting bouts of depression and (worst of all) having her feet suddenly stand flat on the ground instead of in a perpetual high-heel stance.

Given the severity of her crises, Barbie is directed to go meet with Weird Barbie (Kate McKinnon), the Barbie you become when you're played with too hard. Weird Barbie tells her she has to go to the real world to find out what is happening to the girl who is playing with her. Ken tags along, and thus begins the adventure.

But finding out the origins of her malady is only part of the story. Along the way, Ken discovers "the patriarchy" and learns that men can actually do things as well, an education he takes back to Barbieland while Barbie herself is captured by the CEO of Mattel (Will Ferrell) to prevent the catastrophe of the world learning about the reality of Barbieland. When Barbie finds the source of her original problem -- found in the form of mother and daughter Gloria and Sasha (America Ferrera and Ariana Greenblatt) -- she returns to Barbieland with her new friends in tow to discover that all the Barbies have been bimbo-fied and that the Kens are now in charge. This is a change that impacts the real world as well, as the toy sales begin favoring Ken offerings. It's up to Barbie and Gloria to find a way to deprogram all the other Barbies so that Barbieland can return to its rightful position -- where men are meaningless and non-contributory outcasts of society.

But Barbie's existential crisis has yet to conclude, and it takes a meeting with the ghost of Barbie creator Ruth Handler (Rhea Perlman) for Barbie to make the decision that ultimately defines her as a woman.

Barbie is a fairy tale. It's not meant to make sense, and it's not meant to have any deeper meaning. It pokes fun at all the various Barbies and Kens that have been produced and discontinued, and even takes a humorous shot at Ruth Handler's problems with the IRS. If you're a Barbie fan -- particularly a Barbie fan with years of experience -- you'll enjoy watching this film at least once.

Watch Barbie on any of the streaming services listed here.

4.0 / 5.0