Let me tell you a little something about joy.
You may think you know joy, but you do not. Because you have not had a major motion picture written expressly for your own enjoyment, such that you might giggle and squeal and kick the back of your seat with recognition of jokes written for you alone.
Upon further reflection, this may not have been the actual construct behind Pitch Perfect, seeing as that many others also seemed to pay to see it and they were not named Duana – but it was the result. This movie is so ridiculously spot-on and hilarious in its examination of campus a capella groups that I am combing through my memories to see if I was wiretapped. (Except not really, because my university didn’t have a capella groups so my nerdy choreo-singing days ended with vocal jazz in high school. Sob!)
Here’s the thing though – it was hilarious for EVERYONE, not just me. Because everyone in the movie is absolutely committed to a capella being their raison d’etre. You don’t need to be skeptical about the validity of harmonizing with others as a way to express yourself, but I think it might make a better come-to-Jesus conversion through the movie if you were.
If you had preconceived notions about what is cool and what is nerdy, a-la the completely and totally endearing Anna Kendrick (learned while watching: girl is not tall), then you get the full joy of watching them be eradicated, and you will maybe hate yourself for the schmaltzy songs you find yourself singing along to when you inevitably buy the soundtrack…but you know what? You’re going to love it. You will thank yourself. And that’s before the surprise gross-out humor or the cute boys or something truly spectacular involving lunch meat that we need to talk about after you’ve seen it.
But the reason this movie is so good isn’t because of a capella puns or the mash-ups or all the jokes given to Rebel Wilson’s “Fat Amy”, which you can see coming and you cringe at, but then she somehow pulls them off marvelously and you sit back and are impressed.
Pitch Perfect is so great because there is a bunch of women having a blast with one another, and you can tell. Without ruining the storyline, there are instances when they are supposed to be mad or sad or irritated with one another, and full credit to the actors, it works, but when they are performing together and enjoying themselves, their smiles are about to break their own faces, and it is a party that you are lucky enough to attend.
I do need to figure out a word for when there is a performance going on onscreen and you are loving it but then are jealous you’re not actually in it and are reduced to practicing the dance moves in the theatre bathroom afterward - that melancholy, slightly envious pride - “Referred Adrenaline Syndrome”, maybe?
If I have a criticism, it’s that the PG-13 rating precludes some of the dirtier college-sex scenarios I was imagining with the several hot dudes in the movie, but I assume these will all be included in the unrated DVD for me to perv on. (Producer) Elizabeth Banks, are you hearing me?
Pitch Perfect opens in wide release tomorrow.
Attached: Anna Kendrick at Sirius Radio Studios in New York yesterday.