Movie Review: Pitch Perfect
We check out this fun Glee-to-the-max, sing-off tribute to girl power!
By: Lynn Barker
You go to college where, as a would-be D.J./mixer/record producer with an “alt” vibe, you don’t fit in. Dad forces you to join a group, any group and the Bellas, female a cappella singers, are the only vague match. Little do you know that you’ll find your niche and BFFs where you least expected.
Newbie at School
Beca (Anna Kendrick of the Twilight saga) is a freshman at college who had rather be in L.A. looking for work as a DJ/re-mixer. Hey, she’s good at it. But, her college prof dad will pay her way through school if she earns a degree. He insists that she mix in and join… something.
Bellas or Bust!
In addition to interning at the campus radio station, Beca decides to try out for the Bellas, a lame/tame gaggle of a cappella gals who, despite their great harmonies, dress like 1970’s flight attendants and sing songs from at least 20 years ago. The Bellas are led by mean girls Aubrey (Anna Camp) and her BFF assistant Chloe (Brittany Snow of Hairspray). Desperate for members after leader Aubrey got crazy nervous and blew chunks at a big competition, they take on Beca, “Fat Amy” (the wonderful Rebel Wilson) and other quirky misfits.
In Love with the Enemy
Beca, who has a tough time with relationships, is attracted to Jesse (Skylar Astin) a fellow radio station intern who ends up singing with way-more-popular, rival campus guy group The TrebleMakers. He’s got the hots for her too but it’s a rough road to a match-up.
Ticking Off the Mean Girl
After a cool musical riff-off at the bottom of an empty swimming pool (think the Step Up street contests only with pure, unaccompanied voices), a lot of the girls realize that Beca can take them out of all the boring traditional music into all new, modern mash-ups including rap. Aubrey is worried. When Beca can’t take it anymore and belts out a fresh tune on her own at a competition, Aubrey wants to get rid of her.
Out of the Bellas for a while, Beca returns to save the day and take over from Aubrey before the final International a cappella competition which, of course, results in amazing music and a win for all, including Jesse who finally gets a big smooch from Beca.
Although this mix of “Glee”, Step Up or Drumline and Bridesmaids is predictable, it is super funny and there is some really great music in it. Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson, in fact, everyone can really sing and the arrangements and choreography make for a very perky visit to the Cineplex.
Romance is secondary to girl power/bonding and the Bellas are packed with truly wacky and wonderful characters who will keep you rooting for them while laughing and enjoying their progression from kitschy disco tunes like “Turn the Beat Around” to Bruno Mars and Hip-Hop.
Also hilarious are Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket in Hunger Games) and comic veteran John Michael Higgins as ex a cappella choir members commentating at the various sing offs. Just “out there” belly laughs from this duo.
Anna Kendrick is fine as the ambitious and talented but socially shy Beca but it’s Rebel Wilson as the self-named “Fat Amy” who proves that talent, style, great humor and comic class don’t have to come in small, size 0 packages. You go, girl!
Pitch Perfect Moive: