What first, the glaring social criticism “Barbie” or the dark historical drama “Oppenheimer”? Many cinema operators answer the answer to the hardest question of this cinema summer with: Barbenheimer – but literally. Various cinemas offer so-called double features, in which the two very contrasting films are shown one after the other for a lower overall price.

The response to these double screenings is consistently positive, even if they naturally require a lot of perseverance, as Christine Berg, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the Berlin-based cinema association, sums up.

“Watching the films then becomes a happening and sometimes that can’t be long enough.” It cannot be precisely quantified how many people have gone to these double performances so far, it said. “The fact that two such different films are running in the double feature is a very special phenomenon,” said Berg to the German Press Agency.

Bright satire and dark thriller

Greta Gerwig’s “Barbie” is a garish satire with a pink comic book aesthetic that follows the iconic doll (portrayed by Margot Robbie, 33) and Ken (Ryan Gosling, 42) who briefly make their way into the real world from their home of Barbieland . Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” is a dark thriller about the inventor of the atomic bomb. Excessive marketing, Hollywood stars involved and two cult filmmakers created a hype around both films. Both films hit theaters on the same day (July 20).

Measured by the number of cinema-goers in individual screenings, “Barbie” initially seems to be more successful overall. According to Berg, a total of 4.05 million tickets for “Barbie” were sold in Germany up to and including Sunday, and 2.76 million for “Oppenheimer”.