The Bellas have won the World Championship of A Cappella!! The ladies of song have reached the pinnacle of their niche, and the world is their oyster! That, is until they realize that being part of an a cappella super group really doesn’t pay the bills. Can they pull off one more high stakes competition that will secure them true fame and fortune, but this time going toe-to-toe with bands that don’t just rely on their voices, but instruments as well?
Pitch Perfect has built its franchise on popular tunes, attractive young actors, and the insanity of Rebel Wilson, and the final chapter is no exception. The unfortunate fact of the matter is that the key focus of our central character, Beca (Anna Kendrick), is still kind of a snob three films in. She has certainly relied on the Bellas to advance her own goals, but remains stand-offish at times to her co-crooners. She wants to make it big, but on her own terms. After a mildly humorous montage of how everyone’s careers have hit a wall, the Bellas get together for a reunion to sing at the aquarium, but really to watch former member Emily (Hailee Steinfeld) sing with her new crew. Aubrey (Anna Camp) gets the bright idea to use her military dad’s clout to book the Bellas on a USO tour.
This is, honestly, the beginning of the end for any sort of cohesive plot. We the audience are now thrust into a barrage of repackaged sexual, sexist, and racist jokes that weren’t that funny the first time they were uttered. The cliches begin, with the vocal group competing against other bands for the eye of D.J. Khalid, who for some reason is the leader of the USO’s entertainment division. The real crime of the film is the use of the absolutely brilliant John Lithgow in a convoluted daddy-issue subplot featuring the aforementioned “Fat Amy” (Rebel Wilson). It’s a good 45 minutes of the film that borders on unwatchable and cringeworthy.
At the end of the day, the real star of these films has been the music, which is admittedly infectious. The “riff” battles are very entertaining and I honestly wouldn’t mind if this was just a straight-up 90 minutes of song and dance. The Pitch Perfect franchise has brought some good beats, but unfortunately for this reviewer, it ends on a sour note.
2 Cayman Island Accounts out of Five