Pitch Perfect 2
Singing is only for the brave! As a drama kid in high school, it was clear that if you were at least a passable singer, then you were one of the cool kids of the group. I myself was not talented enough to achieve the high notes of something like Donny Osmond, but I knew of several kids who voices were so good, that I had hoped that I might see them signing along side a big celebrity or at least move up to a high level on American Idol or The Voice. Besides simply singing, the cool kids were able to a capella sing in unison.
Now seems to be the high point of a capella singers with the sleeper hit Pitch Perfect. Ever since that movie came out, almost every teenager, boy or girl, seems to go nuts for that movies or anything related to a capella song related (like the current hit band Pentatonix). While I agree that the movie was fun to watch, I just never thought it was the comedic masterpiece that everyone says it was. It had some good performances, though the story was predictable in my book. Pitch Perfect 2 now has the chance to redeem itself with a second outing with the bella singers.
It has been 3 years since the girls had won the national competition from the last movie and most of the women including Beca (played by Anna Kendrick), Chloe (played by Brittney Snow) and Fat Amy (played by Rebel Wilson) are both juggling being seniors in college and going on their national tours as the acclaimed group. During one concert with president Obama in attendance, Fat Amy has a wardrobe malfunction that humiliates and disgraces the group, ruling them suspended from competing in the national competition again.
Chloe rounds up the girls to move on to the international competition to restore their status as the best. As told from a capella experts Gail (played by Elizabeth Banks) and John Smith (played by John Michael Higgins), no one has ever been able to beat the German team, Das Sound Machine. The team seems so focused on winning the contest that they don’t know that Beca has taken an internship with a record label, hoping to push her career aspirations forward. This causes a revelation that none of the girls seem ready to move on from college and away from their close group of friends. With the new addition of freshman Emily Junk (played by Haliee Steinfeld), the Bellas will need to find their voice again and figure what’s important after college.
Pitch Perfect 2 has a lot of the same humor from the first movie; maybe not all great jokes but enough to get a couple of laughs out of me. This movie also borrows a lot of plot elements from the first movie; a mistake that causes the team to be humiliated, a leader whose too focuses on winning rather then the groups own singing and learning the value of friendship.
In a way, I felt like that I was watching the first movie again, though I guess it is different enough that it will please fans of the original. Fat Amy is still a character favorite of mine and the singing is still entertaining. I’m guessing that despite the fact that it ends with the Bellas graduating, this won’t be the end. I’ll bet a million dollars that Pitch Perfect 3 or Pitch Perfect: The Next Generation will continue the same story but at least contain different song sequences that make the franchise a popular one.
I’ll give this three microphones out of five. I liked this as much as I liked the first, which I still only see as okay movies. I doubt my opinion will change it’s hardcore fan base, so take it for what it is and enjoy the voices.