Shakira Says Barbie Movie is “Emasculating”

Shakira poses in front of a pink background with her hand on her face.

Image Courtesy of Allure

By Noah Slayter

As a surprise comment during her April 2024, Allure interview, 3-time Grammy winner Shakira made her disapproval known about 2023’s top film “Barbie.” The singer said that she felt the movie was “emasculating,” especially since she has two sons, who she says should “feel powerful too [while] respecting women.” 

In promotion of her new album Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran (Women No Longer Cry), Shakira went under the magnifying glass to give her thoughts on a variety of topics. The most shocking, though, was her statement on the “Barbie” movie. 

Shakira is recently divorced. The singer-songwriter split from her partner of 11 years, Gerard Piqué, a soccer star from Spain. She had two sons with Piqué and Shakira said that it was her sons who really made her feel negatively about the film.

“My sons absolutely hated it. They felt that it was emasculating,” the singer said. “And I agree, to a certain extent. I’m raising two boys. I want ’em to feel powerful too [while] respecting women.”

The singer further articulated an annoyance with society itself when it demeans men and masculinity. 

“I like pop culture when it attempts to empower women without robbing men of their possibility to be men, to also protect and provide. I believe in giving women all the tools and the trust that we can do it all without losing our essence, without losing our femininity. I think that men have a purpose in society and women have another purpose as well. We complement each other, and that complement should not be lost.”

The Grammy winner pointed out how Barbie seems to disregard men’s role in society, using third wave feminism as a replacement for traditional gender views.

An Allure interviewer asked, “Just because a woman can do it all, doesn’t mean she should?” 

Shakira responded, “Why not share the load with people who deserve to carry it, who have a duty to carry it as well?” 

The singer is not the only celebrity with condemnation for the film. 

Conservative pundit Matt Walsh said Barbie is “the most aggressively anti-man, feminist propaganda fest ever put to film.”Ben Shapiro posted a video of him burning Barbie dolls with a lighter. Even Bill Maher said the movie was “man-hating.”

Oscar winner, Meryl Streep sang the movie’s praises saying it “saved the movies last summer and all of our jobs.”ScreenRant critic, Joseph Deckelmeier tweeted that Barbia was “funny, bombastic, & a very smart performance.”

The film also had an infamous snub for Oscar nominations, which drew much ire. Many said that since Greta Gerwig and Margot Robbie did not receive nominations for director and actress (respectively), this showed the teeth of the patriarchy in Hollywood. However, others pointed out the record three female best director nominations for the 2024 Academy Awards, as well as America Ferrera’s supporting actress nomination for her role in Barbie.

 The debate will likely continue ad nauseam.

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