Pitch Perfect 3 - This Sequel Fatigue Movie Doesn't Aca-Rock
Dir: Trish Sie
Starring Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Anna Camp, Britany Snow, John Lithgow, Elizabeth Banks, John Michael Higgins, DJ Khaled
The one good thing about PP3 (it’s easier to call it that) is you know it’s all going to shit from less than two minutes in. For this is the moment when Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson slo-mo into freeze-frame leap off an exploding luxury yacht. And this is a Pitch Perfect movie??!!
The following title card of “Three weeks earlier” alerts us to the fact that we now have to sit and watch the explanation for how this sequel-fatigue heavy movie comes to pass – and it’s all some nonsense about how the aca-Bellas get back together having only recently left college, even though most of them now look like they’re in their mid to late thirties. They find themselves on a USO tour round Europe hoping to win an opening spot for DJ Khaled – yeah, that would work! – and going through various rather irrelevant father issues. It’s one of the latter – that offers Lithgow as Fat Amy’s errant and absent dad showing up with one of the worst cinematic accents since Dick Van Dyke, (Aussie rather than cockney – we think, but it’s hard to place it) and delivering surely the worst on screen performance of this great actor’s entire career. Don’t worry though, he’s not alone – many careers feel like they’re hitting their low point here.
The other great thing about PP3 (see, you’re warming to it now) is - if you were to take out all the musical numbers and the generic travelogue footage – this movie would only be about 60 minutes in screen time. So why oh why does it still feel so long?
It would be easy to call this thoughtless, thankless, ill-conceived threequel a purely cynical cash in on the part of both the studio and all those involved. But to be cynical you at least have to have some form of interest in what you’re delivering. And nobody here appears to want to commit that far. Kendrick is wasted, (and seems to keep disappearing from screen), Wilson’s shtick is now soooo old, Lithgow – well, we have now seen (and heard) things we can never unsee. Higgins manages a couple of solid cheap laughs. But that’s aca-it. (And let’s hope that really is aca-it!) Dead horse. Well and truly – even brutally – flogged.
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