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Movie Review: Pitch Perfect—The quest for collegiate a capella glory

Pitch Perfect
Photo provided by CinemaBlend.com

Collegiate a cappella has never been so exciting as portrayed in the newly released film “Pitch Perfect.”

Jam-packed with an energetic cast, the movie creates a hilarious atmosphere emphasizing self-expression and sarcasm galore. This captivating and highly inspiring movie, directed by Jason Moore (“Dawson Creek,” “One Tree Hill”), is sure to have you singing along by the end.

Based on the book, “Pitch Perfect: The Quest for Collegiate A Capella Glory,” the main character Beca (Anna Kendrick), an aspiring DJ, is forced to go to college. After getting a job at the campus radio station, she meets music aficionado Jesse (Skylar Astin), and after a little resistance by Beca, the nerdy friendship blooms.

Beca, in attempts to make her college experience more memorable, joins the Bellas, an all girls a cappella club. Tension between Beca and the Bellas’ ring leader, Aubrey (Anna Camp), is present from the beginning, and hard feelings persist through the movie. Aubrey feels threatened by Beca and is continually looking for something to hold against her...a-ca-awkward.

On the other end of the spectrum, Jesse can’t help but fall in love with Beca. He is ever in pursuit of her; however, Beca doesn’t know how to appreciate this and instead pushes him away.

In the end, Beca smooths things out once Aubrey allows her to implement her new school music mashups while keeping the old school tradition. She also makes things right with Jesse during the final scene.

“I’ve just been shot!”

—Fat Amy

Rebel Wilson, who plays “Fat Amy” in the film, ironically brings a focus on ethics throughout the movie, especially on stereotyping. Though she herself is a stereotype who stereotypes others, she seems to be one of the most real and open characters. When Aubrey asks her why she calls herself Fat Amy, she replies, “Yeah, so twiggy b****** like you don’t do it behind my back.”

When faced with decisions, Fat Amy makes good choices. “Well... sometimes I have the feeling I can do crystal meth, but then I think, mmm... better not.”

Pitch perfect is the perfect pitch for all audiences, if you like singing that is. But this is a different type of musical performance. Unlike “Glee” or “High School Musical,” this a cappella film puts a twist on many well known songs made famous by popular artists (“Since You’ve Been Gone” — Kelley Clarkson, “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” — Pat Benatar, “Magic” — B.o.B, “Give Me Everything”— Pitbull, “Titanium” — David Guetta). Many more song snippets are used in addition to that playlist. From auditions to the riff-off, from rehearsals to regional competitions, scarcely five minutes of the two hour movie goes by without some type of singing or rhythmic performance.

The humor outweighs the predictability, and the movie will have you cracking up as you catch the little comments and underlying tones. You will get more exercise laughing than Fat Amy does practicing her cardio of “horizontal running.”

The movie was quite pleasing partially because the actresses actually used their own voices and partially because some of the characters, such as Fat Amy, were encouraged to display impromptu acting. The burrito scene was a favorite and easily quotable with Fat Amy’s yell “I’ve just been shot!”

 The top things I like most about this movie are Fat Amy, the diversity of girls making up the new Bellas, and the choreography and music selection for Pitch Perfect.

The overall vibe left me wishing there was an a cappella group like this at UCC. This movie was more than I expected and truly blended into the perfect pitch of comedy, drama, a little action and a pinch of romance.