“Follow Olivia Rodrigo as she recounts the memories of writing and creating her debut album. Take a look on her journey from Salt Lake City to Los Angeles.”

Director: Stacy Lee
Staring: Olivia Rodrigo, Towa Bird, Dan Nigro
Release Date: March 25, 2022

This one can be wrapped up really neat and sweet: if you enjoy the music of Olivia Rodrigo and her album SOUR, then you are going to enjoy OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) (2022).

Alright, so are we done here?

I guess we can hang around a bit longer.

OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) (2022) is a road trip movie that has Rodrigo remembering the different checkpoints on her journey of releasing SOUR. Director Stacy Lee reminds the audience of this overlying theme with drone shots of Rodrigo’s car transpiring over various pretty landscapes between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles. The young musician makes pitstops and then urgently talks into camera explaining where the inspiration from her music came from.

In case you didn’t know already…SOUR was born from a broken heart about a boy. Oh how it is always seems to be the same. There are moments in OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) where I had to roll my eyes. Olivia Rodrigo is in high school, and that is going to add a tint of innocence to every deep conversation that she has with herself and the audience. She is still so young. Immensely successful, more so then I will ever be, but still so young. Much like how this movie is filmed through an Instagram sepia filter, everything Olivia says and experiences is through its own unique lens as well.

Is it weird for me to feel a little bit more disconnected to the songs of Olivia Rodrigo after hearing it all through her point of view. I suppose that is the beauty of music or the arts, that it can be interpreted in many different ways. However, when you get told of what the artists inspirations were, it is less your own and now more of theirs.

The eagerness that Olivia Rodrigo speaks with is directly reminiscent and comparable to another musician. You know where I am going with this.

Olivia Rodrigo is just like a younger version of Taylor Swift. Writing lyrics about heart break that sting or electrify, combined with a music undertone that is often impossible not to hum along too. A young version of Swift (and possibly older but I haven’t been to a concert since 1989) would speak to the crowd like she is an elementary school teacher and the audience were her willing pupils. I get that same sense from Rodrigo. She knows that people are listening. She knows that what she says matters. What she is doing and saying now is often in the broad and totally understandable, so as to not ruffle any feathers. I am most excited to see what she has to say as she grows older and she learns to speak is less platitudes.

Okay. I need to say this. The relationship with Olivia Rodrigo and her producer Dan Nigro is a friendship or work relationship that I do not understand. That kind of open talkative, artistic and collaborative effort is something I do not know. That was the most fascinating part of OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film). It was also the most cringe at times. As a high schooler, (again, based solely on my eyes) Olivia Rodrigo says things she doesn’t always believe to get reaffirmation on a music or project. This is not a fault. This is who Olivia is at what age she is at. Every single person has done, and still does it to an extent. The biggest question I have is whether or not Dan knows it for what it is. Adults can sense when a compliment or a bit of reinforcement is needed; they can sense the fishing of the compliment. Is Dan replying with as much earnestness because he is genuinely that adamant, or is he doing so because he knows his artist needs it. It is honestly more impressive if he is doing the latter. Producer always putting the artist first.

OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) is a perfectly fine, short, music documentary. It is not earth-shattering with its character break-down or story-telling, but it is ideal for someone who wants to learn how to talk in their own voice. That way it can be inspiring, If you aren’t looking for that, you can simply throw OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) for background noise to hear all the great songs that are on the album. Because let’s be real. SOUR is a great album.

OLIVIA RODRIGO: driving home 2 u (a SOUR film) is streaming on Hulu.

STANKO RATING: B (3.0/5 Stars)


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