Saturday, 16 May 2015
Pitch Perfect 2 (4 Stars)
Well, this was certainly a surprise. It's a sequel that's far better than the original film.The situations are similar and many of the jokes are repeated, but that's what the audience expects. The difference is that the jokes are more frequent, and the girls are more believable as characters. I couldn't remember most of the names from the first film, but it wasn't necessary to re-introduce them. I recognised their faces and their attitudes. That was enough.
At the end of the first film the Barden Bellas became America's university a cappella champions. The second film shows the team disgracing themselves in a performance before an audience that includes Barak Obama. After this they have to claw their way back to the top, and their journey culminates in the world a cappella championships in Copenhagen.
The biggest improvement over the first film is that the music is better. My foot was tapping throughout the film. This can be attributed to the contributions of two men: Mark Mothersbaugh, ex-Devo, who had overall control of the music, and Flula Borg, the German DJ who arranged Das Sound Machine's songs and also appeared as a member of the group. I'm tempted to buy the soundtrack album, that's how good it is.
The cinema audience certainly loved it. The room was almost full, apart from the front few rows. With today's screen sizes nobody ever sits in the first four rows unless they're desperate. It was a very female audience. I'd estimate that more than 90% of the audience were female. I arrived early, so I could observe the people coming in. There were a few men here and there who were obviously accompanying their girlfriends, but mostly it was groups of women. And then there was me. Whatever the critics say, this will be an enormous hit.
P. S. Don't walk out of the cinema too soon. The story continues almost all the way through the credits, including more music and jokes.