Pitch Perfect 2 offers viewers a musically ambitious and entertaining coming-of-age comedy. The performances are increasingly impressive throughout, however it has a few major issues in its scripting. Although funny at times, many of the jokes in Pitch Perfect 2 are inherent to the genre, consisting mainly of American college humour which may be lost on a UK audience.
The central premise is uncertain, inconsistent and even unimaginative. Vague threats from the college dean and Elizabeth Banks’ and John Michael Higgins’ characters – who do provide some comedic relief at times – make the motives behind the Bellas’ journey uninspired. The third main issue in Pitch Perfect 2 is the subplot in which one Bella whom wants to become a music producer. All the technical skills involved in producing music, even on a small scale, are completely bypassed to focus on her writing ability. To become a great music producer it takes technical skill, a breadth of musical insight and a genre-eclectic knowledge which aren’t addressed in the slightest.
Even with these issues, it is imaginable that Pitch Perfect 2 could be a great success. It offers a light-hearted premise and delivers some stunningly choreographed dance pieces, presenting an impressive array of different styles. The most admirable of performances include a world music rendition of Journey’s Any Way You Want It and a 90s hip hop medley, including various classics from A Tribe Called Quest, Cypress Hill, Lauryn Hill and Kriss Kross. Hip hop fans will also no doubt be stimulated by a vaguely funny Snoop Dogg cameo and some excellent beatbox interludes, most notably by acclaimed comedian Reggie Watts. Pitch Perfect 2’s main redeeming features are its humour – although at times crude – and its a capella performances, without which the movie would collapse into a black hole of uninspired subplots and poorly orchestrated love interests.
Overlooking some of its cinematic flaws, for the right audience Pitch Perfect 2 is a feel-good comedy worth watching, presenting well-rehearsed, scripted and performed music and dance pieces.
Pitch Perfect 2 is released nationwide on 15th May 2015.
Watch the trailer for Pitch Perfect 2 here: