For starters, I don't normally watch Barbie movies. This movie seriously damaged my testosterone levels, anyways. Have you ever seen Mean Girls? Well if you have, imagine it animated, watered down, and featuring Barbie.
Barbie and her pals are ready for a brand new school year. Barbie has some high hopes for this year such as being in a band and being the school TV station anchor. Her friends try and support her, as all of her hopes seem to fade away, until a woman in a mall store offers Barbie a diary and a bracelet that unlocks it. As Barbie writes about all the things she wants, they all seem to be becoming true.
Barbie gets closer to the hottest guy in school and her band is picked to play at the school's fall formal. Things are looking good for Barbie and she sets her sights on head anchor. When she decides to write an expose on the "populars" and their activities, she decides to go deep undercover. When researching the "populars," Barbie herself becomes more popular and starts to forget about her true friends.
Packed with girlie action, Barbie Diaries is sure to keep any 6-11 year old girl glued to the set. The plot was surprisingly aimed at a teenage audience, which may not necessarily be a good thing. The story mainly involved a sophomore year Barbie, possibly losing some of Barbie's core audience. While teens are getting more and more exposure to mature themes, they are quickly becoming desensitized to this type of entertainment. So while showing a hip and cool high school Barbie may have sounded like a good idea on paper, it may not be the most efficient way to present the franchise.
Sure, Barbie Diaries is animated and does feature every little girl's favorite friend, but the story is not for little girls. I am particularly worried that this is the exact type of thing that is leading our nation's youth in the wrong direction. The film depicts high school as a superficial fashion show and a breeding ground for shallow behavior. Barbie gains friends by making lip-liners that look like highlighters Also, some of the suggestive themes really alarmed me – such as when Barbie's guy friend walked in on the three girls hugging and expressed excitement towards their "girl hug." I have to admit that I laughed, but I'm 22. For all intents and purposes, I will say that I do know that this is just a Barbie movie. But people wonder why 13-year-old girls are dressing more provocatively and why they are developing these superficial morals.
Other than my morally-charged rants, Barbie Diaries would be perfect for your 9-year-old daughter if she has already made you buy her designer jeans or a Dooney & Bourke purse.
The ultimate babysitter for little girls, an animated Barbie.
An almost too-mature Barbie.
On the Side:
Most of the singing is done by Skye Sweetnam.
Breaking Down the DVD:
The Film: D
The Delivery: C+
The Extras: D
Final Grade: D+
By Brian Gibson, Associate Editor of Film School Rejects