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Taylor Swift Miss Americana (2020) Review

My Cat Persephone Wrote this Review on her Smartphone. It was better than Mine. .

This onesheet is as black as Taylor Swift will ever get.

This onesheet is as black as Taylor Swift will ever get.

Rating

TV-MA

Running Time

85 mintues

Those of you who’d like to get an intimate look at one of America’s favorite pop stars/internet punching bags need took no further than your Netflix account for Miss Americana…and then wish you were watching something deeper that didn’t feel so micro-calculated and stage managed. It’s by no means a bad documentary, but there are more than a couple of times when you feel like you’re watching a documentary on Taylor Swift as well as a commercial for Taylor Swift and the product she’s selling is a bunch of Taylor Swifts.

Hardcore fans of hers will no doubt eat this documentary up, but I think it’s her casual fans or even her haters that will find this documentary even more interesting.

I don’t dislike her music by any means (I particularly like that song where she breaks up with that guy) but I wouldn’t call myself a fan—

I don’t know what you’re talking about.

Someone gave me those jackets. A Taylor Swift fan that I barely know. Named…Roy. Roy Taylor. He gave them to me because I was cold and I needed three jackets or I would suffer from hypothermia. That’s why.

Because I really enjoyed his performance in The Favourite. And I’ve been meaning to get this Taylor Swift tattoo removed because it’s not what I wanted. I wanted a tattoo of a kitten wearing a parachute.

I really think I should be getting back to this Miss Americana review because as a person that’s not necessarily a fan but is familiar with her music I think I can offer a different perspective than your typical slavish fanboy or fangirl—

Can you really name just one favorite song? That’s like trying to name your favorite Skittle or ice cream flavor. Do you go for the skewering of gender politics in The Man, or the poppy brilliance of Paper Rings? What about London Boy with the Idris Elba cameo? There’s just so much to choose from that one paragraph can’t possibly---

I don’t know what you mean. I’ve never heard the Lover album more than once…or twice.

That’s just for the review.

Swift Synopsis

Miss Americana opens with Taylor Swift executing one of her assistants for not getting the right kind of fruit to mix with her yogurt. It seemed like an honest mistake, but she did ask for a plethora of mixed berries and the assistant did give her only the berries that were currently in season. What he should have done was fly to the other side of the world to get the proper berries and then take two transatlantic flights to get it to Taylor before her yogurt got warm.

Maybe then Taylor Swift wouldn’t have rightly thrown him into her personal alligator pit.

Fun Fact You Learn From Miss Americana- Taylor Swift planted a device in Kanye West’s brain and speaks to him through it. He thinks it’s God talking to him and that’s why he gets so crazy head sometimes.

Miss Americana isn’t a typical music documentary in that it chronicles an artists’ rise to stardom from nothing, then the flagging middle part of a career, then the drug overdose phase, then the paunchy, only-singing-the-old-songs late career to the part when you’re being lip-synched by Rami Malek in an mediocre biopic…

There are elements of that in Americana, but it’s more about how a superstar found her voice after years of keeping her mouth shut.

Even that cat hates Cats.

Even that cat hates Cats.

Fun Fact You Learn from Miss Americana- 25-year old Riley Montross was the first fan she accidentally killed in a Meet-and-Greet before a show in Washington. She reported she had a great show and ever since then she “accidentally” kills one of her fans as kind of a good luck ritual. Her stagehands and publicists eat the remains.

You learn how she was a little more than pissed that 2017’s Reputation didn’t get as many Grammy nominations that 1989 did. Along with how much she thrived on and unhealthily needed the adoration of strangers.

Americana recounts her need for approval and her gradual realization that her own approval is the one that counts the most.

Those of you that are Taylor Swift fans will recognize the more familiar and public beats of her life. From her sexual assault battle in court, to her time in a Botswanan prison, to publicly stating her political opinions after years of neutral silence.

Fun Fact You Learn From Miss Americana- When she’s down, Taylor’s favorite movie to lift her spirits is Salo Or The 120 Days of Sodom. It just “makes her happy”.

But most of all, you will get to learn what you have to do get a song written about you. All you have to do is…watch the movie.

Her eyes pierce your soul.

Her eyes pierce your soul.

What Works With Taylor Swift Miss Americana

  • Some of the sequences are genuinely affecting, none more than her #TaylorSwiftIsOverParty exile. Most of us will never know this much fame and this much hate. You understand a little more why celebrities have meltdowns.
  • Depending on your side of the political divide, Swift’s public political awakening is either stirring or something trigger-worthy. Either way it’s compelling to watch onscreen, even if it does feel a little more than calculated.
  • Taylor Swift’s cat steals every scene he/she is in. I’d watch an entire Netflix series about that cat.

What Doesn’t Work With Taylor Swift Miss Americana

  • Speaking of cats, I know this doc was shot way before the debacle that was Cats, but I think we’d all like a public apology from anyone who was involved with Cats.
  • As stated before, there are more than a couple of passages on Americana that feel way too staged and calculated. This is the only time in your life when you feel like you’d rather be listening to a podcast than have something forced down your throat.
We ARE getting back together.

We ARE getting back together.

Overall

Miss Americana is a doc that’s equal parts fan service and compelling story about a woman growing into herself. Will satisfy the millions of Swift fans but will interest those who know nothing about her/hate her. So much better than Cats.

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