‘driving home 2 u’ Review

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‘driving home 2 u’ documentary on Disney+

   Since Olivia Rodrigo released her debut single and smash hit ‘drivers license’ in January 2021, she has had nothing but positive reviews and success. Her debut album ‘SOUR’ gained 385 million streams on Spotify in the first week. She recently won three iHeartRadio Awards, and is nominated for seven Grammys. In her new documentary, ‘driving home 2 u’ on Disney+, Rodrigo performed new styles of the songs off the album, talked about heartbreak and writing songs, and the success she has had over the past year.

   Rodrigo opens the documentary with quick clips of her reactions from the success of ‘drivers license’, such as her reaction to hearing it for the first time. She then goes into a performance of one of her songs, ‘happier’. The documentary takes place during a road trip between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City. She shows clips of the ‘SOUR’ production sessions with Dan Nigro, and the inspiration behind her songwriting. Her breakup was the inspiration and story behind ‘drivers license’, and most of the album. Rodrigo says that it was hard to fathom ever loving someone else at that point, and the pain of seeing him with someone else. The next performance was ‘jealousy, jealousy’, which was a lot more hardcore than the mellow but impactful original. She says this was the second song she wrote off the album about her negative obsession with social media and its harmful effects. She then talks about how excited she was getting her drivers license and that a big reason she wanted it was because of the guy. A clip of the first time she records it plays, and it continues through various clips of her live performances of it, such as on SNL, MTV Push, The Tonight Show, The BRIT Awards, iHeartRadio Music Fest, Austin City Limits, and more. Rodrigo says she was worried about releasing her second single, ‘deja vu’, after how well ‘drivers license’ was received. When Rodrigo wrote ‘deja vu’, she talked about her obsession with recycled relationships and how weird it seems. In the song, an example of this is the line “she thinks it’s special, but it’s all reused.” The next scene shows her sitting on the roof of a theater, singing it, and the bridge plays from a radio as she returns to the car. The next song she talks about is ‘favorite crime’, which some of the lyrics started from a poem in her notes app. The performance is much softer than the calm yet emotional original, which she says writing helped her forgive herself. Rodrigo’s pop-punk hit and third single, ‘good 4 u’ is performed with a string arrangement in contrast with the angsty original. Just when you thought the emotional ‘enough for you’ couldn’t get any more heartbreaking, it does, stripped down with only soft piano as the music. 

   The rest of the documentary continues with Rodrigo talking about songwriting and new styles of the rest of the songs off her ‘SOUR’ album. The documentary gives fans an insight into her songwriting style, her feelings, and her reactions to the major success she has had over the last year. Rodrigo says part of why she wanted to do this so the fans who won’t be able to attend her ‘SOUR’ tour, which kicks off on April 2nd in San Francisco, can still be able to listen to and experience her live performances of her music. Even if fans did not care about the songwriting process and behind the scenes looks, the new arrangements of her music show authenticity and her musical ability.