Cinematic Releases: Silly Pitches: Pitch Perfect 3 (2017) - Reviewed

Pitch Perfect 2 closed out the college chapter of the Barden Bellas lives with light, fluffy happiness. Winning the Worlds a Capella Tournament and graduating from college were the main highlights from the prior movie and it just felt right. The humor was dead-on and the cast felt relatable. The Pitch Perfect franchise could have ended there and been better for it. 

We open Pitch Perfect 3 with all of the Bellas miserable and ill-equipped to handle life in the real world since graduation. None of them are out living the successful lives that we were led to believe they were moving onto at the close of Pitch Perfect 2, so when they are invited to a Barden Bellas reunion, all of ladies are thrilled to be able to perform together once more. In proper Pitch Perfect cheeky form, though the event doesn’t go as planned; the ladies are thrilled when they find out that they are able to have a final group performance when Aubrey’s dad offers the group a chance to complete an overseas USO tour. Upon their arrival they realize that they are competing against 3 other bands to open for DJ Khaled on the final night of the tour. The Bellas quickly transition from the kooky, independent ladies we had in the prior two films into star struck fangirls at the idea of becoming big stars. 

Pitch Perfect 3 had some funny moments that echoed the silly humor of the prior two films, but the multiple story lines lacked any cohesion and for the most part the humor fell very flat. Toward the middle of the movie you realize that Pitch Perfect 3 is desperately trying to exercise an over-the-top plot in a franchise that has always done really well by not being plot driven. Part of Pitch Perfect’s charm was really the fact that it was a heck of a lot of fun without even requiring a significant plot. The Pitch Perfect series was popular because of its ability to take a bro style stab at humor and make it super relatable to women. 

Look!!!! Godzilla!!!

The two items that really were the saving grace of this film were firstly, the outstanding musical numbers performed by the Bellas, all which were choreographed with the grace and precision of the prior films and then, secondly, and most importantly, the cast. At this point the women of the cast have a fantastic bond which is felt throughout all of the films, even if the humor of this one wasn’t executed the same way as it was in the prior films. Rebel Wilson and Anna Kendrick steal the show more times than one and Elizabeth Banks and John Michael Higgins’s characters are still hilarious together, providing much of the movie’s comedic relief. 

I wish I could say that Pitch Perfect ended on a high note, but unfortunately that just wasn’t the case. I should also note that if you’re going into the film hoping to learn the mystery of who DJ Khaled is and what exactly he does, alas, that is still a mystery.


-Rachel Rutherford