Meridian High School Student Newspaper - The Lasso

The Lasso

Meridian High School Student Newspaper - The Lasso

The Lasso

Meridian High School Student Newspaper - The Lasso

The Lasso

Now Showing: “Barbie” vs. “Oppenheimer”

Graphic by Eva Williams
Graphic by Eva Williams

“Barbie” and “Oppenheimer” were the biggest movies of the summer… but the time-old question is, which one was better? Lasso staff reporters Ben Behr and Sam Gabrl argue about which one was the true movie of the summer.


Samantha: “Barbie” was the bright, pink, bejeweled new film that hit the theaters this summer. It became an instant classic, focused on the empowerment of women and what the patriarchy has done to women—especially mothers. “Barbie” is fun and easy to watch, as it’s bright, pink and absolutely hilarious. It’s the highest-grossing movie ever made by a woman, bringing in 1.03 billion dollars, almost double the amount of “Oppenheimer.” 

Yes, maybe “Oppenheimer” fanatics can argue that the “Barbie” movie had significantly worse reviews than “Oppenheimer,” but what do you gain after watching it? Barbie is the movie that you watch with your mother and leave the theater in tears. Do you really want to waste three hours of your life watching a movie about a physicist nobody’s ever heard of? 

In the creation of this movie, Director Greta Gerwig showcases the different Barbies through the years, and it really exemplifies that Barbie is far more than the picture-perfect blonde girl she’s been made out to be. Barbie can be weird, smart, loving and beautiful regardless of her appearance. 

Barbie, the cherished doll, has more versatility than Oppenheimer ever has. J. Robert Oppenheimer has lived and died; there’s nothing you can gain from watching his film that hasn’t already been said. However, Barbie is forever changing and adapting with our time; she’s a treasure that will never compare to a measly physicist. 


Ben: The appreciation of great media, and even great media itself, is a lost art, left for previous generations. A time when movies like “The Godfather” and “Shawshank Redemption,” were appreciated and awarded and shined…

The average quality of movies has greatly declined in recent years, replaced instead with media giants like Disney and their constant releases of just-okay movies. Even when genuinely good directors such as Quentin Tarantino try to release movies with more of a focus on quality, they are drowned out by the monotonous noise of big streaming services. 

“Oppenheimer” breaks this trend and proves that the golden age of cinema isn’t yet behind us. Directed by one of the greatest directors of all time, Christopher Nolan, and one of the best-adapted screenplays in recent history. Oppenheimer leaves the formulaic and overdone writing and directing of recent years behind, replacing it with groundbreaking cinematography and practical effects. 

A comparison between “Oppenheimer” and other movies seems incredibly one-sided, given its top-tier acting and directing. “Barbie” (an admittedly great and influential movie) and “Oppenheimer” (a much better movie) are constantly compared due to their release dates being the same, and a debate rages as to which is better.

“Oppenheimer” has one of the greatest casts in cinema history, with actors such as Robert Downey Jr., Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Florence Pugh, and so much more. The cast of “Barbie,” on the other hand, although containing many quality actors, doesn’t compare to the sheer acting ability displayed in “Oppenheimer.” Due to the award-worthy performances from Robert Downey Jr., Cillian Murphy, and more.

While Samantha might argue that the fact “Barbie” made more money than “Oppenheimer” proves the superiority of “Barbie,” “Oppenheimer” still grossed a significant amount while also having a higher critic and audience score than “Barbie.” 

“Oppenheimer” has also been called a male-centered movie by many “Barbie” fans, yet “Oppenheimer” highlights perfectly the important roles of the female characters involved through the actors Emily Blunt and Florence Pugh. All in all, both movies are examples of great media, yet “Oppenheimer” takes it to another level and thus is the better movie.


These are drastically different movies, but there was clearly a lot of effort and love put into both… Samantha and Ben may disagree, but there’s still time for anyone who wants to go see them and figure out for themselves who they side with.

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About the Contributors
Ben Behr
Ben Behr, Staff Writer
Ben is a sophomore, and this is his first year writing for The Lasso. He likes sleeping in and playing tennis.
Samantha Gabrl
Samantha Gabrl, Staff Writer
Samantha is a sophomore on her first year writing for the Lasso. She enjoys Starbucks and pink.