This Was the Most Powerful Moment in ‘Barbie’

The Massive Image

  • Barbie
    explores advanced themes of patriarchy, mortality, and womanhood.
  • Probably the most highly effective scene is when Margot Robbie’s Barbie tells an outdated girl on the bus cease she is gorgeous.
  • The scene celebrates the wonder and privilege of getting old, a message that’s usually missed in society.

With Greta Gerwig’s Barbie incomes eight Oscar nominations earlier this yr and stars Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling displaying no indicators of slowing their scorching streaks, now’s the proper time to rewatch 2023’s plastic and fantastic smash hit. Barbie may be at its most enjoyable when it’s bombarding us with brilliant pink nostalgia and energetic dance numbers, however the film actually shines when it leans into its advanced explorations of patriarchy, mortality, and what it means to be a girl simply making an attempt to exist in society. Whereas there have been many scenes, together with America Ferrera’s poignant monologue that artfully discover all of those concepts, Barbie’s strongest scene is definitely one with barely any phrases in any respect: when Barbie (Margot Robbie) sits on a bench subsequent to an outdated girl (Ann Roth) and tells her that she’s lovely.


Barbie suffers a disaster that leads her to query her world and her existence.

Launch Date
July 21, 2023

114 minutes

What Is Greta Gerwig’s ‘Barbie’ About?

In Barbie, the titular toy lives within the great world of Barbieland, a matriarchal society where the women are in charge of the federal government, and the lads are content material to seaside one another off and vie for scraps of the Barbies’ glowing consideration. Our protagonist, known as Stereotypical Barbie, is simply that: a radiant blonde bombshell who has no particular profession path however is beneficiant, sort, and joyful to spend her days internet hosting mates on the Dreamhouse. Nevertheless, when Barbie’s ft out of the blue flip flat (gasp!) and he or she begins to have horrifying ideas about impending demise, she pays a go to to Weird Barbie (Kate McKinnon), who informs Barbie that she has to journey to the actual world in an effort to discover the lady enjoying together with her and assist her rediscover her pleasure.

After a protracted journey throughout house, sea, and snowscapes, Barbie and her Ken (Ryan Gosling) lastly arrive in Venice Seashore, the place Barbie feels an unfamiliar sense of unease and insecurity, whereas Ken feels an influence he’s by no means skilled. To Barbie’s horror and Ken’s astonished delight, they quickly be taught that the actual world isn’t a matriarchy in any respect, however relatively a patriarchy run predominantly by white guys who maintain most positions of energy, plaster their faces on the forex, and ogle ladies within the streets (I do know, I do know… #notallkens.) The longer that Barbie stays in the actual world, the extra disillusioned she turns into with its remedy of ladies however the extra enchanted she turns into by simply how actual it’s, providing tears and bushes and a variety of intense emotions that Barbieland has by no means offered her.

Greta Gerwig’s ‘Barbie’ Tackles Self-Love in a Patriarchal Society

As she takes a seat on a park bench and displays on the enormity of her discoveries, Barbie seems over and sees an old woman sitting next to her. It’s necessary to do not forget that in Barbieland, there are not any outdated ladies, as Barbies are imagined to replicate a model of ageless, untouched magnificence. That is Barbie’s first time seeing a girl with grey hair and wrinkled pores and skin, and we are able to think about how stunning that will be for her. Earlier within the film, throughout her malfunctioning, we noticed Barbie expertise a spot of cellulite, and it nearly despatched her over the deep finish, so we are able to see how this second of seeing her first senior citizen might have simply been performed for an inexpensive giggle. Somewhat than make a joke on the girl’s expense, nonetheless, Barbie seems at her mystified, taking a beat earlier than merely saying “You’re lovely.” The girl quietly agrees with Barbie’s commentary, and the 2 simply sit there and smile at one another till Gosling’s Ken saunters over with thrilling revelations concerning the existence of male domination and in addition horses.


The Musical That Inspired ‘Barbie’ and ‘La La Land’

This influential Nineteen Sixties French musical starring Catherine Deneuve impressed each Greta Gerwig and Damien Chazelle.

Now, just about each girl is aware of that when anyone tells her she’s lovely, she’s both anticipated to behave astonished that anyone thinks she’s enticing, or she has to reject the praise flat-out in order that she doesn’t appear immodest. This scene in Barbie pays no thoughts to any of that, and the lady on the bus cease is allowed to acknowledge that she’s beautiful, and he or she is aware of it. Moreover, the thought of feminine magnificence in a patriarchal society is made a lot extra sophisticated by the method of getting old. At a time when younger ladies can age themselves by fifty years utilizing TikTok filters after which be horrified by the outcomes, we’re taught day-after-day that the older we get, the much less enticing we turn into. Males turn into silver foxes whereas ladies turn into out of date.

This Scene in ‘Barbie’ Embraces the Magnificence and Privilege of Ageing

Barbie takes the other strategy, utilizing this scene to understand the fantastic thing about getting old. Writer and director Greta Gerwig mentioned the brief however very important scene in an interview with The New York Times, discussing how she solid her good good friend, 91-year-old costume designer Ann Roth within the function and considers the scene integral to the movie’s central message. Gerwig completely describes the second as a “transaction of grace” between the 2 ladies, and we are able to see the way it encapsulates Barbie’s examinations of mortality and wonder. In an age when ads for Child Botox and retinoids are continuously being shoved down ladies’s throats, it is good to simply have a second wherein the privilege of a protracted life is widely known relatively than bemoaned. It additionally helps Barbie notice on the end of the movie that though actual life doesn’t final ceaselessly, that’s what makes it so particular, and he or she would favor it over her present plastic actuality.


Hollywood, I Dare You to Make a Weird Barbie Movie

She has a cool haircut, she smells like basement, and he or she’s prepared for her solo debut.

As we flock to our couches to rewatch Barbie and get one other repair of Gerwig’s pink paradise, we are able to take pleasure in this brief scene and really feel infinitely grateful that it wasn’t left on the chopping room ground. This highly effective second in Barbie is so necessary as a result of it reminds ladies that we must be so fortunate to satisfy these older, lovely variations of ourselves, weathered by all of the trials of life and surviving by means of it anyway. Whereas we might, at occasions, envy days spent inside the delicate partitions of a Dreamhouse, Barbie exhibits us that though actual life isn’t at all times good, it far outweighs a man-made existence.

Barbie is accessible to stream on Max within the U.S.


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