Pitch Perfect 2 hits a high note after its premiere May 15th as number one in the box office and No. 1 on Billboard 200 album chart.


Sophie Hill, Editor-in-Chief

When the sequel to a movie that surpassed all expectations was announced, the hopes for Pitch Perfect’s encore were low. While most follow-up movies fail to capture the novelty and excitement of the first, the continuation of the musical extravaganza allowed for the world of a cappella to once again dominate the big screen. Pitch Perfect 2 was a laugh-out-loud movie that made its audience want to sing, dance, and compete alongside the ridiculously talented cast.

Pitch Perfect 2 begins, much like the last one, with the Barden Bellas, a collegiate a cappella group of misfits, making a disgrace of themselves.

It is revealed the only way the Bellas can reinstate themselves in the national collegiate competition and regain their reputation is to win the world a cappella championships. No American team has ever come close to winning, and it is obvious the Bellas have their work cut out for them. Along the way, they learn their biggest competitor is Das Sound Machine, a well-oiled, hardcore German group who only wear black leather and tulle and sing intimidating techno tunes.

However, the oddball team seems to do well when painted as the underdogs, and characters like Fat Amy, a boisterous Tasmanian of unabashed shamelessness, embraced their differences compared to traditionally popular type-A’s.

Pitch Perfect 2 turned around with almost the exact same group of Bellas we came to know and love, with the exception of Hailee Steinfeld as Emily Junk, a hopeful freshman with dreams to be a singer/song writer. Overall, the Bellas still showed their quirky, miss-matched dynamic, but managed to avoid over-doing certain characters or humor with the introduction of a diverse cast, both in singing style and personality, and the development of relationships between people in the film.

Banks kept the humor and quirkiness alive in Pitch Perfect 2 while still maintaining her role as the hilarious foil to John, a misogynistic a Capella commentator played by John Michael Higgins.

Director Elizabeth Banks did a fantastic job recruiting musical geniuses to make the movie as successful as it was; including Ed Boyer, who worked on Glee, and Deke Sharon, who arranged The Sing-Off. Banks also hired popular songwriters Sam Smith and Sia, launching the original song, “Flashlight” debuted in the movie’s finale to be an instant hit. Furthermore, Pitch Perfect 2 included one of the best scenes in the last movie, the Riff-Off, where a cappella teams “spontaneously” build off of each other through a series of songs in a specific category. The musical prowess of the movie’s creators is certainly evident in the ten minute mash-up of songs spanning centuries and genres carefully selected to match the personality of the teams performing them.

Between building the tension of a scene by increasing the BPM of each subsequent song or packing the movie with clever banter on politics or pop, it was the small details and quick one liners that showed through in the movie. There’s no denying it earned its top spot in the box office and its record for the best opening weekend for a movie musical comedy. Pitch Perfect 2 was, by all accounts, aca-awesome.

Picture Perfect