The Quill

The Student News Site of BASIS Independent Silicon Valley

The Quill

The Quill

Barbie or Oppenheimer


Just a few months ago, the simultaneous release date of Barbie and Oppenheimer sparked a fiery debate across the world. The 21st of July set the stage for the infamous internet phenomenon and movie event of the year, “Barbenheimer”,” that highlighted a radical difference in genre: a biographical film on the heavy burden of creating nuclear weapons vs a show that revolves around the classic toys that many have come to love. Many people had fervent opinions on which one was better, and our teachers, of course, were no stranger to this debate. We, as students, were particularly curious about their preference, so we decided to interview them!! Below are the answers of our teachers.

Mr. A :

When we interviewed Mr. A, he didn’t give us a very definite answer. Although he is a fan of both movies, he doesn’t really prefer one over the other. He described it as, “a slow song and a fast song, and neither is better than the other.” Still, he does see himself watching more of Barbie throughout his life since it’s a fun, lighthearted movie. He even owns a “Kenough” hoodie, a reference to the feelings Ken has for himself.

Ms. Ganz:

“Barbie made me cry, Barbie made me happy, Barbie made me feel all the emotions, but when I watched Oppenheimer, I just thought everything was too loud”, was Ms. Ganz’s answer after watching both movies back to back. I think it’s safe to say that she liked Barbie a lot more than Oppenheimer.

Mr. Schindler:

Mr. Schindler expressed his love for Barbie’s theme, music, actors, and the overall lively vibe; however, he felt as though it was more of a Ken movie than a Barbie movie. Even though he never really played with Barbie as a kid, he still found the movie enjoyable and fun. On the other hand, Mr. Schindler thought Oppenheimer was just a decent movie that ran for far too long and could have ended much earlier than it did. Although he did find it interesting from a physics standpoint, there were a few aspects he didn’t particularly like or agree with. He says that he would definitely watch Barbie more times than Oppenheimer.

Mr. Meyerowitz:

Although Mr. Meyerowitz didn’t have a favorite, he used his history expertise to give a lengthy speech on the deeper meanings and connections behind both movies in the post-WW2 era.  Barbie, a toy doll manufactured after WW2, was designed for little girls to play out their fantasies about how they wanted to look and be like in the future. Unfortunately, Barbie was designed with the expectations of women’s ideal standards in a time where America was very sexist, expressing how, although people are free to play with Barbie however they want, they are still confined to the limits the manufacturer corporation set. Mr. Meyerowitz relates this limitation and control that corporations have over people to the limitation and control the government also has over people and their lives, a concept highlighted in the Oppenheimer movie. He says that in a way, both movies show that though people now live free and individual lives, they are still somewhat controlled and influenced by the overwhelming power of the government and big corporations.

Ms. Orthiague:

“Barbie all the way!” she exclaims. Avidly waiting for the Barbie movie since long before its release, she expressed her excitement over the message of feminism displayed throughout. Ms. Orthiague also noted her love with how the movie reminded the audience of the original use of the beloved toy doll, and that although both were great, Oppenheimer wasn’t as unexpected or interesting as the Barbie movie.

The Barbie movie has taken most of our beloved teachers by storm, going strong with a 5-2 win over Oppenheimer. Although the two iconic figures lead to both movies being highly anticipated, in the end, Barbie came out victorious in this cinematic debate.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Quill Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *