The first Pitch Perfect was a pleasant surprise that was a rom-com set to music. While the sequel still found some of the charms, Pitch Perfect 3 was a shade of the originals with better music than the second. There is fun to be had in the film, but it attempts to mock it’s own film flaws which only emphasizes the shortcomings.
Pitch Perfect 3 doesn’t do the franchise any favors
Beca (Anna Kendrick) and the rest of the former Bellas are unhappy with their lives after college and decide to give it one more go. Aubrey (Anna Camp) sets the girls up to perform as part of the USO show, but a competition emerges to get to open for DJ Khaled on a worldwide tour. Now the Bellas have to beat three other artists who all play actual instruments in order to stay together.
There are a lot of expositional moments that are given with forced dialogue. In fact, one of these moments a member of the Bellas even points out that there is a lot of exposition in that conversation. Making fun of your bad script within the film doesn’t justify it being bad. They introduce a love interest for the quiet Lilly (Hana Mae Lee) that never goes any further than two scenes. A quick dismissal of Jesse (Skylar Astin) and Beca’s relationship felt extremely bad, as it was the focus of the first film.
The music has always been a major draw to this franchise, and that is where the fun resides. The riff-off in this one features some really awesome medleys and a few good jokes from the Bellas. Britney Spears’ Toxic gets a great rendition by the Bellas at the beginning and end of the film. Unfortunately, the music isn’t as front and center as it has been thanks to a convoluted plot involving Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) and her estranged father (John Lithgow); it throws an action element into a film series that never needed one.
Pitch Perfect 3 didn’t work as much as the previous two have. It felt like it didn’t take itself seriously at all. While John Michael Higgins and Elizabeth Banks commentator characters have always slightly mocked the idea of acapella groups, the tone of this film seems to think that the third movie is a joke. Unfortunately, the good parts are only enough to earn it the rating of Not a Total Waste of Time.