Is It Too Soon To Call ‘Barbie’ The Most Important Movie Of 2023? (No.)

We’re not even halfway through 2022, but it’s not too soon to look forward to 2023. I mean, what’s left to be excited about for the rest of this year, outside of the final episodes of Better Call Saul, the remaining episodes of Stranger Things season four, the returns of Tuca and Bertie, What We Do in the Shadows, and Harley Quinn, and on the big screen, the NC-17 Marilyn Monroe biopic with Ana de Armas, George Miller’s follow-up to Mad Max: Fury Road, Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans, and Avatar: The Way of the Water. OK, maybe there’s a few things to look forward to between now and December, but me, I’m already counting down the days until July 21, 2023.

Folks, it’s time to talk about Barbie.

Have I seen Barbie? No, of course not. There’s not even a teaser. But I’ve seen the paparazzi photos of Margot Robbie on the set in blindingly pink outfits, and I’m ready to declare it the most important movie of 2023. (I’m tempted to say “best,” but Cocaine Bear comes out in 2023, too, and I’m not ready to make that judgement yet. Also out next year: John Wick Chapter 4, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Indiana Jones 5, and Dune: Part Two. Can we at least agree that Barbie will be the best non-sequel and/or movie about a cocaine bear?)

Why, you may be wondering, am I so excited for a movie about a six-decades-old toy that I never owned as a child because I was too busy playing with my Stretch Armstrong? (Fun fact: I couldn’t remember the name “Stretch Armstrong,” so I did a Google search for “muscle stretch toy,” and found what I was looking for. This might be because my safe search was turned on.) Let me explain. It’s because…

-I trust Robbie, who could credibly be called the best actress of her generation

-I trust writer and director Greta Gerwig, the director and Oscar-nominated writer of Lady Bird and Little Women (and her co-writer, Marriage Story‘s Noam Baumbach)

-I trust the rest of the stacked cast, including Ryan Gosling as Ken (!), Will Ferrell, America Ferrera, Simu Liu, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, Michael Cera, and Emma Mackey

-I trust Robbie and Gosling on rollerblades, who look like if Samara from The Ring crawled out of a Lisa Frank folder instead of a television

-And most of all, I tru— LOOK AT THESE PHOTOS

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I could (and arguably should) have ended this post after the photo of bright-pink Robbie and Gosling as Barbie and Ken — case closed, you already have “Barbie movie” in your Google calendar for July 21, 2023 (unless a member of Aqua), etc. But there’s something else I’d like to discuss. Some have made the argument that “we are getting exposed to way too much of this movie way too soon before it’s out,” which I understand. There’s always the risk of burnout, or that sky-high expectations won’t be met.

Counterpoint: Twitter is miserable, and I haven’t been this excited for celebrity paparazzi photos since Ana de Armas and Ben Affleck’s daily walks during the pandemic. Let the people (me) have their fun and enjoy bubble headed beach blonde Ryan Gosling. Maybe Barbie won’t be great; it could be quickly forgotten IP drivel like Jem & the Holograms instead of a subversive classic like The Brady Bunch Movie (a standout in the “main guys are weird and everyone thinks they are weird” genre).

I doubt it, though. Besides, at least we’ll always have this:

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