Kees Chalmers’s review published on Letterboxd:
Yeah so this is like my thousandth time watching this film and I kinda love it now. After a hiatus of about a few years without watching Pitch Perfect I came across it on Netflix and thought why not, and it reminded me of how much I love this film. Still as a 16 year old I adore the freshness and hilarity of this film.
In the midst of a time where all Hollywood seems to crap out these days are remakes and sequels of popular franchises we got this little gem back in 2012. The idea of a university college film centered around a competition for accapella is so out there and original, it’s hard not to love it. It’s so over the top (in a good way) and makes it absolutely hilarious. Right from the outset we get a sense of the tone and type of film this is gonna be and stays consistent and true to that tone the whole way through.
The film making here is nothing astounding. The direction is good but nothing to write home about. The cinematography is yet again good enough but not groundbreaking and the editing is nice. In any other scenario this film would be completely forgettable but this is just one of those lightening in a bottle moments where everything just works. So much energy is pumped into this film and makes for a joy to watch. The characters are well written and given a good amount of characterization to the point where we understand their motivations and reasons for being this way. And it’s not done with flashbacks and exposition, it’s done with fantastic visual storytelling. This makes the characters so relatable and hilarious as they do seem like people you’d meet at a college but done in a very intentional over the top way which just makes them even more fun to watch on screen. Anna Kendrick is such a relatable lead as she is the audience’s perspective of walking into this world. She’s just as weirded out by this college culture as we are but it seems as if her character warms up to the scenario and gets as invested into it as we are which is exactly what a lead should do. As well as that she is absolutely hilarious to watch. Bumper played by Adam Devine is probably the funniest character in the whole movie. He’s so unlikeable and likeable at the same time. He’s so over the top and makes for a ton of fun to watch on screen. He’s constantly cranking out hilarious one liners that I will never forget.
The music and the concert sequences are exuberant and so well done. Correographed and directed incredibly well and the songs they chose matched the tone and vibe of the rest of the film which immersed me into this world and that concert. Every time I rewatch this film I find myself on my feet singing away with the rest of the cast.
The only criticism that I’d have with Pitch Perfect is that it hits certain story beats and plot points that are pretty generic and ordinary which was something I noticed just this time of rewatching it. The rest of this film is so fresh and unique which makes up for the tiny little lapses of falling into generic story telling with a genre like this.
Behind the curtain of energy, music and humour, this is just a simple story of someone trying to break the monotony of music and in doing so broke the monotony of Hollywood films. Such a fresh and unique idea for a movie and takes you on a ride of excitement for an hour and 40 minutes.