“Taylor Swift: Miss Americana” Documentary

BY Kali D’Agostinis

Contributing Writer

On Jan. 31, pop singer-songwriter Taylor Swift released her documentary, “Taylor Swift: Miss Americana.” Directed by Lana Wilson, the film was shown in select theaters across the country and is now available on Netflix.

The streaming service described it as a “raw and emotional and revealing look” into the different periods of her career.

It debuted at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival on Jan. 23, days prior to it being released.

“I really enjoyed how they were able to emphasize her stance on female empowerment through the film not only through her political involvement but also through her songs and her music videos,” said junior, Julia Eldridge.

“Miss Americana” features an in-depth look into the life of the Grammy Award winner, including never-before-seen footage of her songwriting process throughout the several years of her career.

The film depicts a series of events throughout the musician’s personal life and career, including her mother’s cancer diagnosis, her sexual assault, her eating disorder and the process behind the creation of her seventh studio album, “Lover.”

Taylor Swift broke her silence in “Miss Americana” regarding her political views and made a call to action using her large platform.

It captures her hesitation and commitment towards her stance on the Equality Act and the process of publicly announcing her political views on the various social media accounts she controls.

According to Netflix, following its release, “Miss Americana” became the highest-rated Netflix original biographical documentary on the streaming service.

“Taylor Swift: Miss Americana” features a brand-new song from the artist, “Only the Young,” which was played during the ending credits.

The film also touches upon Swift’s insight into Kanye West’s controversial interruption of Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech when she won the Video Music Award in the Best Female Video category for her song “You Belong with Me” in 2009.

Cameos take place throughout the film with artists like Brendon Urie from the band Panic! At the Disco, who is featured in Swift’s song “ME!” Other appearances include producer Jack Antonoff, boyfriend Joe Alwyn, actor Todrick Hall and her well-known cats, all of whom have contributed to Taylor Swift’s career and personal life throughout the years.

In the documentary, when revealing she suffered with an eating disorder, the “Shake It Off” singer explains that it “helped her to come to terms with herself.” While getting candid about the topic, she revealed that a photo taken at an unflattering angle would cause her “to just starve a little bit.”

Clips throughout her career appeared to have professional anchors, actors and public figures diminishing the pop-star for being “too skinny” and looking “unhealthy” within society.

Taylor Swift also opens up about the way society wanted her to appear and how she felt the need to fit certain standards and stereotypes. But the film it shows the singer breaking that barrier to become her true self and not what the people want her to be as a person in the spotlight.

Throughout her career, Taylor Swift was known for the breakup songs she produced for her fans and the film touches upon the hate and controversy she would receive from the public due to many relationships. Through this narration, the documentary showed the way Swift would process the criticism and hate from individuals who didn’t agree with her image as a female.

“Taylor Swift: Miss Americana” shows the singer’s transition and growth as she gets older and more mature when facing the controversial spotlight as a pop star in today’s era.

“I’ve been a fan of Taylor Swift since her very first album. After seeing her grow through this documentary it makes me look forward to her upcoming work even more now,” said junior Brenna Leonard.

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