It is very rare for a sequel to outshine its’ predecessor, but I think that will be the case for Pitch Perfect 2, which is more than likely to exceed the $112m worldwide takings of its 2012 predecessor.
It is a sharper and funnier film this time around as we meet collegiate singing group, the Barton Bellas again for the directorial debut of actress/producer Elizabeth Banks.
We last saw the Bellas as underdogs who sang their way to becoming National Champions. They are now the Queens of a cappella, singing at the Kennedy Center for the President and First Lady of the US and a national televised audience. Everything looks magnificent when scriptwriting genius Kay Cannon (30 Rock) throws in a showstopper: just as the Bellas are finishing their performance, Fat Amy (the absolute star of the show, Aussie Rebel Wilson) executes an aerial move in what has to be one of the funniest intros that I can ever remember seeing!
Because of the ensuing scandal, the Bellas are suspended from the competition but are still allowed to be part of the World A Cappella Championships in Copenhagen.
On arrival at the World Championships, they meet their competition, the premier German a cappella champions, Das Sound Machine. Led by the Kommissar (Birgitte Hjort Sørensen from political drama Borgen) and her assistant Pieter Krämer (German DJ, writer and composer Flula Borg) there is immediate dislike between the two groups.
Despite disciplinary action restrictions, the Bellas are joined by enthusiastic freshman Emily (Oscar nominee Haille Steinfeld) whose over eager mother Katherine (legendary Married With Children comedienne Katey Sagal) was a legendary member back in the 80s.
Becca (Anna Kendrick) is still the lead of the Bellas and may have the top billing in the credits, but this is definitely Wilson’s movie! She gets the biggest laughs, line after line! It is so uplifting to see that, in this case, the star is not your usual size 1. We see a very progressive approach to female body image, with the larger girl being see as the object of sexual desire to a man (Adam Devine) with absolutely no jokes or irony attached.
It is fantastic to see another Australian talent shining in an international film, with Adelaide Darling, Sia, as the co-writer (with Sam Smith) of the Bella’s grand finale song Flashlight. I think that the Australian contribution made me like this fabulous Chick-Flick just a little bit more!
If you need a good laugh, (which everyone does!) this is the perfect movie to give it to you!
Reviewed by Kirstey Whicker
Rating out of 10: 8