Pitch Perfect 2: Doing it Acappella Style

Pablo Medina , Editor

Anna Kendrick returns as Beca, the lead role in Pitch Perfect 2.
Anna Kendrick returns as Beca, the lead role in Pitch Perfect 2.

Sometimes, there’s no end to a story, even if it seems the ending is clear and immediate. Pitch Perfect, a movie about an all-female a cappella group moving to prominence and fame in media, continues in this sequel, directed by Elizabeth Banks (of all people).

The Barden Bellas group, led by Beca Mitchell (Anna Kendrick), are stripped of awards and accreditation after an embarrassing incident involving the U. S. President and a wardrobe malfunction. Here, they face against a popular and superior German a cappella group, Das Sound Machine. Meanwhile, the group welcomes a new member into the roster named Emily Junk (Hailee Steinfeld,) who can write her own songs but can’t work with existing songs.

The story holds up decently, with some minor side plots to keep the story interesting. However, the jokes expressed in the film are of “hit-or-miss” quality; there are some that simply fall flat, like most of Fat Amy’s jokes (Rebel Wilson) whose idea of humor is to be gross, sassy and/or and disparaging, which appeared more forced than natural.

Other jokes, including one featuring Snoop Dogg, start off funny but are hampered by jokes surrounding it. For example, during Snoop Dogg’s recording, a moment is taken where the recording manager heavily berates a stereotypical hipster’s poor suggestion about making Dogg’s music more unique and popular with dog puppets in a music video. The joke ends up being predictable and unfunny, and the manager’s comments made the experience more unpleasant.

Speaking of inconsistency, a romantic subplot involving Fat Amy and her boyfriend suddenly ends abruptly and resolving in its own strange way. It’s moments like that that leave a strange feeling of nonexistent anticipation, like it lost its purpose of happening. Also, the film’s ending is extremely bittersweet, obviously setting up for a sequel and negating the competitive feel of the film.

The soundtrack for the film is interesting in that the songs are varied in style and execution. The songs range from hip hop to rhythm and blues to modern pop. The singing in the film and the songs are both enjoyable and worth looking forward to. It’s the music where viewers will get the most thrill and goose bumps from.

The supporting cast is a mixed bag; most of the members of the Bella group are just around to see things happen and share a joke or two to liven their presence. Some minor characters are irritating and only share a good joke or two.

This entry in the Pitch Perfect series is difficult to recommend to most viewers. Its music and energy justice are its strongest points, but the humor and flow of plot is lacking, and the character development was simply lazy for everyone starring in the film.

The general consensus I note from viewers of the movie is that it doesn’t have the same humor or power as the first film had. However, I would think that a fan of the first Pitch Perfect movie will enjoy this follow-up just as much, and maybe with the same love for its strange humor and set-up.

The film is still worth checking out for some, but I suggest seeing the first one to enjoy this Pitch Perfect. My review: Out of tune for me, but in tune with others.