Tag Archives: #barbieheimer

Greta Gerwig Inducts “Barbie” into Doll of Fame with Fantastic and Surprisingly Poignant Satire

Writer/director Greta Gerwig isn’t done with plumbing the psychology of little women, setting the sly subject of her brilliantly subversive new work as a personified plaything who’s awakening into the reality of contemporary life. The witty auteur has crafted a loving tribute to those who create, those who play and those who simply grind into the trials of daily life in the eccentric, existential and exuberant Barbie (A). Packing everything she can about the highs, lows, choices and challenges of womanhood into an efficient fish out of water comedy, Gerwig fashions a droll and dreamy doll’s house, a mythology in miniature and a cultural touchpoint that’s so much more than its pristine plastic surface might promise. Much credit goes to graceful physical comedienne Margot Robbie as the title protagonist, discovering empowerment and empathy with support from a mighty female ecosystem. America Ferrera and Rhea Perlman are formidable standouts in the cast who instill wonder and wisdom along Barbie’s journey of self-actualization. As comic relief and a character gaining an agency of his own kind, Ryan Gosling is a hoot as Ken; he’s certainly the source of some of the greatest belly laughs evoked from a character with washboard abs. The production design, costumes and music are exquisite in this candy-colored universe made even more bountiful by the words of Gerwig and Noah Baumbach’s  observational and deeply meta screenplay. It’s a testament to Gerwig’s love of her subject that she can get away with in-jokes at the expense of her Mattel producers and evoke both nostalgia and a forward-looking vision all at once. The emotional undercurrent of the protagonist’s growing awareness about how the world works is something few will see coming; the sentiment is real and earned. This brainy modern classic is more than meets the eyes and will be studied for years to come.

Watch the “Seeing is Believing” podcast for Silver Screen Capture video review and discussion of a faith-based hot take on the #Barbenheimer phenomenon:

Christoper Nolan Makes Interior Adventure of “Oppenheimer” Splendidly Cinematic

Like Oliver Stone’s JFK more than three decades ago, Christopher Nolan’s epic of the so-called “father of the atomic bomb” Oppenheimer (A) examines the public life and significant trials of a misunderstood man from history buoyed by clever cross-cutting and prestigious panache. It’s perhaps Nolan’s most conventional movie to date, and yet every beat of the film is wholly original and affecting. As the title character, Cillian Murphy is mesmerizing: he’s an iconoclast, to be sure, who is equally ill at ease contemplating the morality of inventing a volatile creation and negotiating fraught relationships with the men and women in his professional and private circles. Murphy’s murky portrayal is absorbing and sometimes a little funny for a character under the gun to apply his scientific know-how to a morally dubious cause. The shades of gray factor quite literally into the director’s use of shadows and film stock as the period detail of early 20th century colors transitions to monochrome from sequence to sequence. Nolan masterfully fills in the contours and mysteries of his antihero’s dilemma and wastes few shots in advancing the story forward while zig-zagging through time. The film is packed with strong supporting performances including brittle and boisterous characters played by Robert Downey Jr. and Emily Blunt, who each get to chew considerable scenery in the final act. The film examines the toll of nuclear and psychological annihilation on the individuals bearing an unmistakable and historic burden. For a film as talky as it is, it moves briskly with deepening impact through its ample running time. It’s a blistering portrait and tough subject with high-stakes dramatic choices made throughout. It’s that rare biopic that sucks viewers in from the first frame and transports its audience into the many layers of its story. The score by Ludwig Göransson is also a stunner. This is a modern classic showcasing Nolan and his team at the top of their game. See this impressive, immersive and entertaining work on the biggest screen possible.

Watch the “Seeing is Believing” podcast for Silver Screen Capture video review and discussion of a faith-based hot take on the #Barbenheimer phenomenon: