Anyone who has known me for at least five minutes knows that I love Taylor Swift –– like a lot. I know her favorite and lucky number is 13, the real version of “All Too Well” is over 10 minutes long and the exact night she met her current beau, Joe Alwyn. I’ve grown up with Swift so I know her like the back of my hand. Or at least I thought I did.
“Miss Americana,” a documentary released Jan. 31 on Netflix, gives fans a look into the very private life of Taylor Swift. The film covers everything from her public feud with Kimye in 2016, and her new public involvement with politics. The movie covers things even hardcore Swifties had no clue about, such as her eating disorder while on the 1989 World Tour and the return of her mother’s cancer.
The film touches on Swift’s childhood and her rise to stardom, but the meat of the film takes place in 2018 and 2019. “Miss Americana” is essentially divided into segments, which are a bit out of order. Toward the end of the film, Swift breaks her political silence on Oct. 8, 2018, but the first segment in the movie is Swift getting a call on Grammy nomination day, Dec. 7, 2018. I understand that the movie may have flowed better this way, but I think chronological order would have been easier for the viewer to understand.
“Miss Americana” shows the viewer how much Swift has changed — or stopped listening to the public and started living her life the way she wanted to. For so long she was considered the good, white girl, almost a puppet for her former label Big Machine Records. “A nice girl doesn’t put their opinions on people. A nice girl smiles and waves and says thank you. I became the person everyone wanted me to be,” Swift says in the film. This is why people said she was a role model for tons of people, including me.
But Swift has come into her own, and seems happier, now that she doesn’t give a damn about what people think of her. She does her own thing and doesn’t seem to care whether the public approves of what she does. For example, Swift is notoriously known for her relationships and her songwriting about her former flames — male artists do this too and get praised for it, but that’s another article for another day. But this time, her lips are sealed about her current relationship with Joe Alwyn, and that’s probably a huge reason why they’ve been going so strong for three years.
The segment about Swift and Alwyn’s relationship is my favorite part of the movie. Though viewers never see Alwyn’s face, Swift is obviously happy and so in love with him. The cutest part in the documentary is Swift singing “Call It What You Want” in front of Alwyn and she mouths “I love you” to him behind the camera. The segment about him is too short, but those few seconds make up for it.
Perhaps the most intense moment in the film is when Swift and her mother argue with the rest of Swift’s all-male team and her father about the need for her to post about the midterm elections. The men talk over her telling her she’s making a bad decision, and Swift starts to tear up. A few minutes later, Swift is in her living room making her Instagram post with her mother and publicist Tree Paine. They clink wine glasses and toast “to the revolution,” one of the most comedic moments in the film.
Although the movie can be sad or dramatic at times, there are sprinkles of comedy from Swift or her family members that can make viewers crack a smile, whether she is at dinner with a childhood friend (red-headed Abigail) or speaking to the cameras about her mother’s cancer.
The movie has other amazingly heartwarming and deep moments, but I’m done giving out spoilers. If you want to find out more about Swift, whether you’re Swift’s biggest fan or her biggest hater (here’s looking at you Justin Bieber and Scooter Braun) I highly recommend this film.
I give “Miss Americana” four and a half out of five stars.