(2.5 / 5)
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld
Pitch Perfect (2012) was one of those break-out hits that have come out of nowhere and becomes a phenomenon.
You only have to search “Pitch Perfect Cup Song” or “When I’m Gone” on YouTube and you get so many people performing the audition scene of Beca (Anna Kendrick) from the original Pitch Perfect, it will make your head spin. It has turned into a sort of cottage industry, complete with tutorials on how to sing it.
For the uninitiated click on the link below. While doing so, note that one clip has had more than one hundred and ninety-seven million views…
It is no surprise, then, that Pitch Perfect 2 should be a guaranteed success. Particularly as it hasn’t strayed from the winning formula of the original, which had Beca attending Barden College and being conscripted into acapella group Barden Bellas (despite her aspirations to produce and create her own music).
The Barden Bellas competed in local and national acapella championships, working their way up to become National Champions. In the sequel, the Bellas have a spectacular fall from grace, with a wardrobe malfunction while performing for President Obama and his wife (not actors, by the way) at his birthday celebrations.
Stripped of their title, the Bellas exploit a loophole that allows them to compete at an international level and go head-to-head with their bitter rivals, German acapella group Das Sound Machine.
Perhaps the most interesting new development in Pitch Perfect 2 is the higher profile of Rebel Wilson, an Australian actress who portrays the character Fat Amy. Yes I did just type that. While Rebel’s character is called Patricia, she prefers to be known as Fat Amy, because “I’m fat and I just don’t want people to judge” as she noted in the original film.
Like the original film, the Bellas induct a new recruit who is known as Legacy aka Emily (Hailee Steinfeld). She’s the daughter of a Bella, so the story follows Legacy’s rise through the acapella ranks from newbie to star.
I was initially aware of this film due to my daughter learning and performing the “Cup Song” — with pitch-perfect accuracy (pun definitely intended here) — at the dinner table. And while these films are full of bodily function jokes and the occasional off-putting innuendo, the final analysis is that all involved in the film appear to be having fun and that translates well to its target audience — teenage girls.
This is fairy floss entertainment. Perhaps the affirmation of this was fairy floss being served at the preview we attended. My daughter and her two friends ,who I accompanied to the screening, loved it. They loved the jokes, the chemistry of the Bellas, and the fact that the whole film is, in essence, a celebration of female friendship.
And what’s not to like about that?
For further discussion
- What does the Bible say about true friendship? (Ecclesiastes 4:10, Proverbs 27:9)
Adrian Drayton is the Director of Reel Dialogue.
A film buff and critic for 20 years, he believes in the power
of cinema and the power of God to start conversations.
He is also a massive Star Wars nerd.