Pitch Perfect: Get Pitch Slapped (2012)

Posted: October 30, 2012 in Comedy, Musical, Romance

As she starts her college career at Barden University, Beca can dream of nothing but leaving everything behind to go out to LA and pursue her career in music production. Refusing to let her miss out on the experience of college, her father pushes her to at least give school one year and she must join a student organization. Scouring the involvement fair, a desperate leader of the Barden Belles a capella group seeks Beca out and has a feeling that she has found a great addition to the group. Looking to recoup from a devastating loss in the previous year’s nationals, Chloe and Aubrey realize that they are going to struggle to even get back to the finals with a group of women who are far different than their usual recruits. As Beca gets sucked into the a capella group, she also finds herself slowly falling for one of the guys of her a capella competition.

Starring: Anna Kendrick (Beca), Skylar Astin (Jesse), Ben Platt (Benji), Brittany Snow (Chloe), Anna Camp (Aubrey), Rebel Wilson (Fat Amy), Alexis Knapp (Stacie), Ester Dean (Cynthia Rose), Hana Mae Lee (Lilly), Kelley Jakle (Jessica), Wanetah Walmsley (Denise), Adam DeVine (Bumper), Nicole Lovince (Kori), Shelley Regner (Ashley), Elizabeth Banks (Gail), John Michael Higgins (John), John Benjamin Hickey (Dr. Mitchell), Jinhee Joung (Kimmy Jin), Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Tommy), Joe Lo Truglio (Clef #1), Har Mar Superstar (Clef #2), Jason Jones (Clef #3), Donald Faison (Clef #4)

Anna Kendrick is one of the rising stars of the business. She projects an indie presence with a hint of sass that makes her an intriguing performer. Brittany Snow manages herself well as the bubbly, lovable supporting character, while Rebel Wilson has taken her strong comedic presence to a level that allows her to stand out of the crowd. Skylar Astin feels like a bit of a safe pick as the male lead, but he also matches well, in terms of his personality, with Kendrick. Including Banks and Higgins as the commentators was a very smart choice as they have a great play back and forth in their dialogue. The Clef quartet was also a great additional cameo to help maintain the humorous energy of the film.

  

Better known for his work with TV shows like Dawson’s Creek and Everwood, Jason Moore jumped at his first chance of a feature film by taking on a coming-of-age story of a young woman looking for a sense of belonging. Beca did not realize that she was all but isolated through her passion for music by the way that she remained so focused on her mixing. Her father may not have had a great relationship with her, but his push to join a student group was going to create more of an impact than she could ever have guessed. The Barden Bellas were coming off an embarrassing defeat at nationals the year before, when Aubrey completely lost in during a solo on stage but also inherited the leadership role. Aubrey and Beca were at odds immediately, as Aubrey was more of a dictator in the way the group performed and Beca was more comfortable with questioning every move Aubrey made. Beca and Fat Amy slowly tried to push the group to break through it’s rigid persona, but a surprise second chance for success and an emotional release of frustration finally allowed the women to identify who they were going to be as an a capella group.

  

The film is overrun with references from other films. The biggest one certainly is the 80s influence of The Breakfast Club, but there is also a strange similarity to Bring It On. Where the high school teen comedy focused on a teams struggles to find itself and win a cheer competition, this film took a similar path but gave it a slightly more mature tone but actually a significantly higher degree of humor. Using The Breakfast Club seems to highlight a trend that has appeared in a lot of films recently. 80s music and film have made a resurgence, and seem to be more successful when blended with today’s ideas. This also gets exhibited with how the Barden Bellas seem to bore people with their attempts at winning by using The Sign by TLC.

This film may be similar to a previous high school-based movie on competition but it also feels like a breath of fresh air in a film industry that has felt a little stale. It re-imagines a film type that is enjoyable for a general audience beyond its projected age group.

Dan’s Rating: 4.5/5

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