On reading the summary for Pitch Perfect, one would expect a rather dumb film. You'd think it was just a movie version of Glee. Well, it's not. I'll admit, I was a devotee of first few seasons of Glee, then lost interest. Though I'm not a big fan of musicals, I loved the writing and the characters that made up the TV show. That is exactly how I felt about Pitch Perfect, though I liked the musical choices more than those in Glee. And yes, Pitch Perfect is about a singing competition - college a cappella groups competing for championships. But again, it's the writing and the casting of the very real-seeming characters that made me fall in love right from the beginning.

It's a story rife with conflicts of love and friendship, but throughout, the dialogue remains sharp and witty, and the acting is indeed pitch perfect. First of all, Anna Kendrick, who plays Beca, is a genius. Her character is a bit of a loner, who really just wants to quit college and move to LA to work in the music production industry, but is convinced by her dad to get involved with college life. This young woman is one of my favorite actresses to come on the scene as of late. She blew me away in Up in the Air with George Clooney, and went on to further win my heart as Jake Gyllenhaal's girlfriend in the gritty End of Watch. Her being one of the stars of Pitch Perfect was the thing that made me turn it on, and I came away even more of a fan than before. A just-barely pretty girl with a winning smile, she gives her characters a depth that draws you deeply into her reality every time. She is absolutely mesmerising. As for the story: One of the leaders of an all-girl a cappella group, the Bellas, hears Beca singing in the shower at their college dorm, and convinces her to come to auditions. There, she wows them with her voice and her self-accompaniment on a cup. The group accepts her and a few other misfits, though their captain is a pushy control freak who needs everyone to be as perfect as she thinks she is.
She insists on doing songs from the 80s in a very traditional way, clashing with Beca right from the start, who wants to bring a new mix and a more interesting sound and style to their group. It's a story rife with conflicts of love and friendship, but throughout, the dialogue remains sharp and witty, and the acting is indeed pitch perfect. Other standout actors in the film are Rebel Wilson as "Fat Amy," playing her role with both compassion and joy; Ester Dean, as the not-so closeted lesbian, Cynthia Rose; Hana Mae Lea, the soft spoken Lily; and Anna Camp and Brittany Snow as leaders of the Bellas. Elizabeth Banks and John Michael Higgins play their parts as the irreverent emcees of the singing competitions with just the right naughty flair, and Skylar Astin as Jesse, the man Beca is meant to be with, is adorably charming and funny. Even if you're not a Glee fan, there's nothing not to love about this movie. The only reason I don't give it the highest rating of 10/10 is that I just can't take it that seriously. Still, for a light-hearted comedy, it's about as good as it gets.

Movie reviewed by Georgina Young-Ellis

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