After it was released on 21st July, it seems that the Barbie Movie’s taken over the world.
The movie, which secured all sorts of records for being among the highest-grossing films of all time, has been watched by millions around the globe.
So, what is it about the Barbie Movie, and how did it have such an impact on the world? We’ll break it all down in this article.
It inspired women
The Barbie Movie inspired women all over the globe.
While feminism has made great strides in the last few decades, there still is gender inequality in many professions, particularly in STEM occupations.
Plus, women’s jobs are often not taken as seriously, with research documenting many women even prioritising their partner’s jobs over their own.
In a bit of a meta way, the Barbie movie is all about the doll Barbie coming to life and trying to convince girls in the real world that they can also have serious and important professions.
The movie also documented some of the flaws with this, i.e., it’s great to say that, but it needs to be actioned on.
In the Barbie movie, society changed from being patriarchal to matriarchal.
This meant that women had the power and there was a distinct gap between their status and that of a man’s.
While, of course, this isn’t actually what feminists strive for – their goal is equality – the contrast is an excellent demonstration of how alive the patriarchy is, and how many facets there are that society’s just become accustomed to.
For men watching the film, it could have also helped them to understand some of the issues that women experience on a daily basis.
Taught a valuable lesson about toxic masculinity
The Barbie movie helped to demonstrate some of the issues that toxic masculinity poses.
In one of the final scenes, Ken learns to show his emotions and expresses himself in the (iconic) number I’m just Ken.
Toxic masculinity is defined as when men are pressured to not show emotions and can be very harmful; it can lead to serious mental health problems in males – so it’s another important gender-specific message from the movie.
The world embraced pink!
Onto a more surface level, the world became rose-tinted!
People all over the globe found new pink clothes to wear, pink nails came in and millennials dusted off their pink accessories.
The movie did showcase to women, who may have suppressed their “girly” side in favour of being able to be strong, that it was okay to do both – they could embrace their girliness along with their strength!
Businesses got a girly makeover
It wasn’t just women around the world who embraced the fuchsia Barbie fever.
Pink Barbie hotels came in big time. There’s a Barbie™ Ultimate Staycation hotel in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia (which was the first of its kind), but other hotels that are decked out in all pink decor have been spotted all over the globe, from Ibiza to Mexico City!
In Vegas, Circa Resort & Casino turned pink. Men and women in Vegas were welcomed not only to play roulette but to dress up (in pink, of course), sip on rose-coloured cocktails, splash in the pool that’s straight out of Barbie’s dream house and even pose in the “Barbie box” from the movie.
Then there were the Barbie collections that came out.
Primark’s Barbie® Capsule Collection ensured that there was affordable Barbie-inspired clothing for everyone’s wardrobe, Barbie™ x Tangle Teezer created a hairbrush that looked like it could have been made for Barbie herself and in Brazil Burger King x Barbie served up a cheeseburger with pink sauce!
Questions arose about how appropriate Barbie was for young girls
But it wasn’t all positive. The grown-up nature of the movie (it was actually rated PG-13) led some people to question whether Barbie dolls themselves are actually appropriate for younger kids.
When Barbies were released, opinions of body image were very different to how they are now.
Barbie’s body is completely unrealistic and doesn’t represent real bodies at all. There have long been questions surrounding Barbie dolls and whether they can cause body image issues, and the film opened up the discussion once again.
However, it did try to address it somewhat by the suggestion at the end that there be an “everyday Barbie doll” who would represent the average person.
There was a global shortage of pink paint!
On a hilarious note, apparently, so much pink paint was used to decorate the set that there was a global shortage – and it’s suggested that paint companies profited hugely off the movie.
Love it or hate it – nobody can deny that the Barbie Movie has had a huge impact on society. Whether the impact continues remains to be seen, but it’s certainly a movie nobody will forget in a hurry!