I’m a BIG sucker for girly teen comedies and I’m not afraid to admit it! Teen Comedies appeal to girl’s majority of the time but they have to be truly terrible for me not to at least enjoy watching one. Mean Girls really revitalised the teen comedy genre back in 2004 and once again recently with Easy A in 2010. With the success of the TV show Glee, it was only a matter of time before the idea was capitalised and brought to the big screen. And although it may be predictable, it sure as hell wasn’t a let-down!
Beca (Anna Kendrick) has just started as a freshman at Barden University and is persuaded to join the all-female a cappella group to give it an injection of life and originality after its failed attempts at the previous year’s national competitions. It’s a simple set up, similar to 2000’s Bring It On and one thing that Pitch Perfect doesn’t have is originality. So when all bases have been covered in other films, how do you make your story stand out from the rest? You make it funny as hell!
Anna Kendrick does a great job as the girl next door loner; she doesn’t expect anything from anyone else as she knows what a let-down that can be. But Rebel Wilson steals almost every scene she is in as Fat Amy, whether she is showing off her mermaid dancing or expecting back up dancers when she sings. Rebel’s style of comedy really gives a bit for everyone to enjoy. Also stealing quite a few laughs is the almost mute Lily who you will possibly be quoting for weeks to come. All the girls play off each other well but you can tell sometimes that when Rebel Wilson improvises, the others are speechless and don’t know how to carry it on. This is fine as sometimes in other comedies, when the improve goes on, it is dragged out and becomes unfunny.
The music is toe-tappingly catchy with some great mash ups that will have you searching for the downloads. The a cappella singing is pretty fantastic also as they constantly remind you they are singing without any band and creating all sounds with only their voices. Each scene where they perform whether it’s the auditions, the riff off or at one of the various stages of the competition, really shows how well all the a cappella groups work together and how outstanding the music can be.
Beca has a nice love interest in Jesse, a singer in the rival a cappella group which never feels forced due to Jesse being a generally nice guy and very charming. The main focus is the competition and how Beca tries to change things up and put originality into the performances but the scenes with Jesse really do add a nice touch and help move the story along.
And as I’ve mentioned, Pitch Perfect is far from original itself but it never takes itself too seriously and knows how to play the laughs. Definitely one of the funniest and possibly the most fun movie of 2012, what a way to end the year! Aca-awesome!