The Gustavian Weekly

On Pitch Perfect, and the right amount of Punch | The Gustavian Weekly

By Lily Winter - Staff Writer | April 27, 2018 | Variety

The latest installment in the Pitch Perfect franchise might surprise viewers with a fresh perspective on a capella.

The latest installment in the Pitch Perfect franchise might surprise viewers with a fresh perspective on a capella.

Prepare to meet the Bellas like you never have before. In the next installment of the Pitch Perfect movies the girls are now college graduates, struggling to discover their fit in the adult world.

While previously defined by their standing in the Bellas, our favorite cast of characters now must find their own identities as they chase music producing, vet school, juice vending, and of course, performing as Fat Amy Winehouse.

Yet, when their dreams either appear unreachable or not what they expected, the girls bond together to follow their passions and sing together once more after graduation for the U.S.O tour.

For Pitch Perfect lovers who were let down by Pitch Perfect 2, remember the second installment in a trilogy is always the weakest.

Going into Pitch Perfect 3, I was apprehensive the film would follow the lead of its previous counterpart, and try too hard to tap into the audience pleasers of the first film rather than gaining its own footing.

Instead of producing a carbon copy of the original, Pitch Perfect 3 embraces the troupes of the first two films in a fresh perspective, acknowledging the highlights of the previous films in comical remembrance.

The girls participate in another riff-off, and while it is as musically pleasing as the two previous films, the main enjoyment in the scene derives from the fact that riff-offs are of the collegiate realm.

Because of this, none of the contenders in the adult world are aware of the significance of a rift-off or the rules and thus happily use instruments and collaborate to take down the Bellas, consequently defeating the purpose of the musical competition.

Other throwbacks to previous films include another flying burrito, a plethora of aqua-statements, and the two background Bellas who are barely mentioned.

However, the highlight of the film is the relationship between the Bellas themselves.

In this particular installment, the music takes the back burner in contrast to the witty dialogue and interactions between the girls.

The real winners in terms of music were showstoppers like Britney Spears’ ‘Toxic’ and Daya’s ‘Sit Still Look Pretty’.

Understandably difficult to appeal to all audience members, I personally found the majority of the musical numbers a mix of overplayed radio edits and songs I’ve never heard.

I won’t spoil the final song for those yet to see the movie, but for a movie so central to female characters, I thought the finale missed its mark.

However, the interactions between the Bellas was so powerful, that the secondary music was easily forgotten as the movie took on a narrative about the dreams for an adult future rather than focusing on a college a cappella group.

One of the reasons why the Bella’s relationship became the true highlight of the film was the lack of distracting boyfriends.

While romantic subplots do exist, the Bellas have dropped their college boyfriends in a realistic transition into adulthood.

This change in plot may have been implemented due to general interest—falling in love anew is much more compelling to watch than Bella and Jesse discussing whose turn it is to take out the trash in their stable and loving relationship—but it also goes to show that the female bonds of friendship are more durable, long lasting, and more important than a romantic relationship.

While the film rightfully put the girls’ relationship first, and let the new love interests take second tier importance, the heteronormative nature of the film still managed to show through.

Openly gay Cynthia Rose did not pursue any partner, even as three straight women flirted their way through the U.S.O world tour.

The cast and executives of the Pitch Perfect franchise have also been accused of queerbaiting through the pairing of characters Beca and Chloe.

The girls were paired together in the shower in the first film, touched each other sexually behind a bush for no reason in the second and even promoted the third movie by almost kissing on a Snapchat ad.

Despite the problematic nature of only showing heterosexual relationships the movie did feature an interracial romance, and with an unbreakable tradition of prioritizing romantic love in the big screen, the connection between the Bellas was a refreshing perspective on love and friendship.

View Pitch Perfect 3 in Wallenburg this weekend, the 27 and 28 at 8:00 p.m.             

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