Aca-fans can exhale as Pitch Perfect 2, that anxiously anticipated sequel, actually does the right notes. And not just in terms of bringing in those box office receipts (yay for an female-made, female-lead flick going to No. 1!).
In this follow-up to the mega popular first movie, we find the Barden Bellas in their final year of college, three years after they became the first all-female group to win a national a capella title. All is going well for them until a flashing at a Lincoln Center performance–where the president and FLOTUS are in attendance!–leads to a scandal that strips them of being able to perform. In order to regain their status, the Bellas strike a deal with the a capella association and take on a seemingly impossible task: winning the world championships.
This Bella drama, coupled with a new “Bella Legend” and the tension Beca creates in the group because of her extra circulars, makes for a fresh story with our favourite vocalists. The ladies soon realize they have more competition than they thought in their physically flawless aca-enemies, Das Sound Machine, and now must work even harder to make their voices heard for their one and only shot at redemption.
So do they succeed, both on the stage on the screen? Let’s find out in a traditional aca-judging session!
Totally on point. The first film is full of girl power moments and a slight touch of sentiment, but mostly filled with lots of ridiculous laughs and great music. This time around, they really push the envelope with some cultural stereotypes and a few topical jokes that I’m sure won’t sit well with some people, but were pretty damn funny to me.
BALANCE AND BLEND
In my eyes, writer Kay Cannon, director Elizabeth Banks and the on-screen Bellas (including Rebel Wilson, Anna Kendrick and Brittany Snow) can do no wrong. But they do a really good job of blending smart and silly jokes this time around, including that Sonia Sotomayor mention that I don’t think the kids in my theatre really understood, but almost made me choke on my popcorn. The energy of the film dips a bit somewhere into the middle, but it’s still entertaining and manages to even come back with a vengeance in the end.
You can expect mash-ups of some of the latest and greatest Top 40 hits, along with some oldies, but goodies. The anticipated riff-off is one big goofy scene, but you can’t help but get into it with the help of categories like Songs About Butts, I Dated John Mayer and 90’s Hip Hop Jamz.
This time around, there’s also a sideplot involving two Bellas creating more original music (or as some people say, this film’s “Cups”), which makes for some fun and interesting scenes and a little twist on the expected story.
Beautiful! Aside from the obvious beauty of the diverse cast, the film is packed with fun and colourful locations, vibrant lights and stages, and an array of screaming (in a good way) outfits.
If you’re a fan of cameos, you’ll enjoy seeing a variety of faces from real life a cappella group Pentatonix, to Snoop Dogg, to the Greenbay Packers. Oh, and stick around after the credits for another treat!
I’m going to give them an … 8.5 (out of 10)!
The Pitch Perfect 2 crew accomplishes a sequel that fans will love and watch again, even if it doesn’t go above and beyond our aca-pectations.