Film: "Pitch Perfect 2"; Language: English; Director: Elizabeth Banks; Cast: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow, Hailee Steinfeld, Katey Sagal, Skylar Astin, Ben Platt, Anna Camp, Adam Devine; Rating: **
A sequel to the 2012 released "Pitch Perfect", this musical comedy centres around the Bellas, an-all female A Cappella (Singing without instrumental accompaniment) group from Barden University in the US.
The formidable team consists of Chloe (Brittany Snow), Beca (Anna Kendrick), Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson), Cynthia Rose (Ester Dean), Ashley (Shelly Regner), Jessica (Kelly Alice Jakle), Stacie (Alexis Knapp) and Lilly (Hana Mac Lee). With high expectations and a blotched performance their journey, lame and predictable, sums up "Pitch Perfect 2".
After an outrageously embarrassing accident during a performance before the President of the US, the Bellas are suspended from performing at the American A Cappella circuit. But fortunately for them, this ban does not apply to their participation in the World A Cappella Championship in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Since no American team has ever won the world title, it is agreed that if they win this impossible task, their suspension would be revoked. This mission impossible forms the narrative hook of the film.
The plot is treated more like a collection of sitcom sequences, where the episodes are unoriginal, oft-experienced and unmemorable. Compared to its predecessor, "Pitch Perfect 2" retains the musical verve but lacks depth as every other facet of the film pales in comparison
Logic too seems to have flown out of the window. After being brutally ostracised, it is amusing to note Emily Junk, oblivious of the controversy, is still keen to join the group. She is initiated into the group after an audition and is called "Legacy" because she is the daughter of an ex-Bella. She gives a fairly new direction to the narrative but not strong enough for us to appreciate her contribution.
In this edition, the Bellas are pitted against their all-male counterpart at the Barden University The Treblemakers, the Barden University alumni The Tonehangers and a spectacular German group called Das Sound Machine co-led by Kommissar (Birgitte Hjort Sorensen) and Pieter (Flula Borg).
Independently, each team is distinct with their repertoire and that makes it interesting to watch them perform. Oozing with energy, the DSM group outshines the rest in terms of onstage performances. On the other hand, with a few members of the Treblemakers, romantically paired opposite the Bellas, the dynamics between them makes the narration fascinating and curious.
Most of the characters are cardboard thin. The few who remain with you after you leave the theatre are; Anna Kendrick as Beca- she is a powerhouse of talent who loses her cool every time she is provoked by Kommissar, Hailee Steinfeld as Emily Junk- the youngest team member is charming. Adam DeVine as Bumper and Skylar Astin as Jesse - Fat Amy and Emily's love interest are earnest, lovable and appealing.
Humour is injected by Rebel Wilson as the plugged-in comedienne Fat Amy. She at times, tends to be crude; lacking in style and intelligence, but nevertheless she offers some laughs that are fairly funny.
With decent technical and production values, Director Elizabeth Banks' handling of a weak script, fails to impress viewers.