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Sunday, September 26, 2021

In review: ‘Pitch Perfect’

All it took was 10 seconds into the trailer for me to immediately know I would have to see “Pitch Perfect.” It’s in my nature to watch anything that revolves around singing and competition, or is led by funny women. But after “Bridesmaids” this year, I didn’t know if comical genius could even be reproduced — especially when one Rebel Wilson, the ridiculous roommate to Kristen Wiig, plays a similarly outrageous character.
With leads such as Elizabeth Banks, Anna Kendrick and Brittany Snow, this movie could easily pass off as a funny but unmemorable flick. It isn’t until the full cast list is completely explored that special talents are revealed. One of the supporting actresses actually wrote Katy Perry’s “Firework,” as well as songs for Britney Spears and Kelly Clarkson. The main man was part of the original Broadway cast of “Spring Awakening” with Lea Michele from “Glee.” And for the less peppy, Adam DeVine from “Workaholics” plays a similarly crude character.
Scroll a little bit more into the IMDb.com page and you learn that one of the writers of “30 Rock” wrote the screenplay for this movie. Although the plot line lacks originality or meaning, something clearly went right in the comedy department.
The trailer itself provides the viewer with memorable scenes and repeatable lines. Wilson plays Fat Amy, “so skinny bitches like you two don’t do it behind [her] back.” Fat Amy characterizes the favorite parts of our personalities, as at one point she participates in what she calls “horizontal running,” where she just moves her legs in a cycling motion while on her side. She even admits to DeVine’s character when he suggests that they kiss that “sometimes [she] thinks [she] could try crystal meth but then realizes, eh, maybe not.”
The story makes fun of the traditional and safe women’s a cappella song choices, breaking away to show the commentators, played by Banks and John Michael Higgins, making misogynistic and crude jokes about the performers. Everything about this script is quick-witted and smart — think “Mean Girls,” “Bridesmaids,” “30 Rock” and “Happy Endings” combined.
And you can’t have a movie about a cappella groups without good music. Even the embarrassing “safe” songs are classics to our generation, but in combination with the music of 2011 (for some reason most of the music isn’t super updated) the soundtrack will provide some entertaining tracks.
Naturally, every predictable comedy has some sort of teen romance — but I swear, this time the guy is legitimately swoon-worthy. And not just due to his looks. Maybe it’s just me, but when a guy can sing and be witty — is there anything else to want?
Of course the main group of girls featured in this film feature some of the most ridiculous personalities. Fat Amy has a running joke with another character throughout the film about the “obvious lesbian” in the group, there’s a psychotic Asian girl with darting eyes and close-ups that legitimately will scare you, and the token mean girl has a nasty habit that will bring you back to some of the most memorable scenes from any comedy based on physical humor.
Kendrick plays the main character, a rebel first-year college girl whose daddy teaches at the university, blah, blah, blah. Whatever. She represents what essentially all of us thought of ourselves when entering college: unique, better than everyone else and with secret dreams of making it big as a DJ.
Fans of all genres of humor will find multiple reasons to laugh out loud – snort, even – at this feel-good funny movie. Go get pitch-slapped Oct. 5.

ELIZABETH ORPINA can be reached at arts@theaggie.org.

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