NOTE: THERE IS ONE MOMENT OF SWEARING DURING THE TRAILER.
Review writing can be tricky. You might love a record or a film or a book soooooo much – but how do you possibly pack all the positive energy you’re feeling into one snappy write-up?! Look through our review of ‘Miss Americana’ for some clues – then have a go at writing something of your own…
Taylor Swift: ‘Miss Americana‘
In the first moments of Miss Americana, it’s just Taylor Swift and the camera. No explosions. No special effects. No magic tricks. And yet there’s no turning away from the screen.
Why is the documentary so compelling? Probably because when we hear Swift speak about her feelings, we relate to her so completely. Probably because we’re actually really tired of Instagram and TikTok and it’s a relief to see more deeply into someone else’s life.
Our enjoyment is DEFINITELY inflated by the music that soundtracks so many of the film’s key moments. Taylor’s songs are like escape pods that zoom us into a world where our dreams come true. When the pop star sings about the setting sun or prom or even just walking through the school corridors, she does so in a way that makes those moments feel monumental.
As the film goes on, it’s inspiring to see how much strength Swift has. She begins to understand that her own ideas are as important as other people’s. She recognises the way in which we all morph and shift in response to what others demand of us but also that sometimes that’s not okay. She models the determination needed to fight our way through life.
In the end, then, it’s the combination of special songs and important ideas that make ‘Miss Americana’ so powerful. It’s more than just the portrait of a pop star. It’s a documentary of our time. You’ll love it and you’ll learn from it.
Find examples of the creative and persuasive techniques we chose to give this review as much punch as possible. Look for:
- Short sentences used for deliberate effect
- Lively vocabulary choices
- Direct address and personal pronouns
- List of 3
Write your own review of a song, album, concert, film or book!
Follow the structure that we’ve followed above. It’s certainly not the only way to lay out a review but it’s the method we’re practising today!
- Paragraph 1: Summarise the impact of the first moments. Having heard the opening to the song, or read the opening to the novel etc., what do you feel?
- Paragraph 2: Offer an explanation as to why the opening might have the impact it does.
- Paragraph 3: Focus on one particular aspect that you particularly enjoy and go into some detail about it.
- Paragraph 4: Focus on another aspect that you particularly enjoy and go into some detail about it.
- Paragraph 5: Sum up why the film/book/album/song/concert you’re reviewing was successful (you may wish to link back to paragraphs 3 & 4). Can you finish with a strong punchline?
Once you’re done, you can send your ideas (or questions) in. We want to publish the most exciting writing and offer advice.
Or have a go at writing about your experiences as a teenager with a little more help from the inspirational Taylor Swift!