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Sundance 2020 Review | “Miss Americana”

Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Review by guest contributors Kaitlyn Alserda & Ashley Jensen

The highly-anticipated documentary, Miss Americana, from director Lana Wilson, premiered on the opening night of the 2020 Sundance Film Festival.

The documentary takes viewers into the recording studio with Taylor Swift as she works on her newest album, Lover. The film also documents career-changing moments such as her VMA acceptance speech that was interrupted by Kanye West, her victorious sexual assault case and her important decision to break her silence on her political views.

Taylor Swift attends the World Premiere of Miss Americana by Lana Wilson, an official selection of the Documentary Premieres section at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. © 2020 Sundance Institute | photo by Jemal Countess.

Memorable moments from the documentary show a side of Taylor Swift that isn’t often seen. Swift reveals that she struggled with an eating disorder and explains how she overcame it. She talks about the pressure she felt to please the music industry and the rest of the world, as they all expected her to be someone that wasn’t entirely her. She explains how difficult it is to be a woman in the music industry, and how she has to continually reinvent herself to stay relevant. This is something she says men in the industry don’t have to worry about. Swift discusses the full year where she didn’t allow the public to see her face because she believed that’s what the world wanted.

One of the rawest parts of the film is the moment when Swift is sitting with her publicist, preparing to post about her political beliefs for the first time on social media, and how they had to craft the post in such a way that didn’t sound too offensive but was able to get her points across.

Producers Christine O’Malley, Caitrin Rogers, director Lana Wilson, Taylor Swift and producer Morgan Neville attend the World Premiere of Miss Americana, an official selection of the Documentary Premieres section at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. © 2020 Sundance Institute | photo by Jemal Countess.

Included in the documentary is the new song from Taylor, “Only The Young,” which she wrote for the younger generations of kids that have the power to change the world.

Anyone who does not know a lot about the pop star will learn that she is completely relatable. Viewers will appreciate her bravery to speak out for equality and will admire her advocation for the LGBT community. We hope to see more of the Taylor Swift that doesn’t hold back and who stands up for her friends and things that are important to her.

The documentary will be released on Netflix on January 31. “Only The Young” will also be released on January 31.



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