I thought Pitch Perfect and Pitch Perfect 2 were both enjoyable, fun films. They knew what they were going for and they hit the mark. I wish I could say the same about Pitch Perfect 3. It’s one of those films that you actually wish would have just stuck to the formula that made its predecessors great. Instead, it feels like a sloppy, thrown together sequel with undeveloped plot points just trying to complete a trilogy.
It’s been three years since Pitch Perfect 2 and the Bellas have graduated college and entered the real world. They mostly have jobs that they hate. Beca (Anna Kendrick) and Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) live together in the city, and Beca and Jesse (Skylar Astin) recently broke up. Emily (Hailee Steinfeld) is the current leader of the Bellas and a senior at Barden, and she invites all of the past Bellas to apparently reunite and sing together once more at an event at the New York Aquarium. When they arrive, they realize they’re not singing; Emily wanted them to see her sing with the new Bellas.
Afterwards, Emily apologizes and they all talk about how much they miss each other. Aubrey (Anna Camp) convinces them all to go to Spain to join a USO performance that she’s able to get them into through her father (he’s in the army). It turns out to be a competition, and whoever wins the competition gets to open up for DJ Khaled. The three other groups in the competition all use instruments which is a new obstacle for the Bellas. Gail (Elizabeth Banks) and John (John Michael Higgins) are along for the ride, as they’re filming some sort of documentary that seems to focus on the Bellas.
Meanwhile, Fat Amy finds out her father Fergus (John Lithgow) is staying at the same hotel as the Bellas, and it’s because he tracked Amy there and apparently wants her back in his life. He’s an international criminal, and he’s been absent from her life for so long, so she’s hesitant but eventually agrees since it seems he’s changed.
From there, the Bellas give it their all in the competition and it mixes with the Fat Amy/Fergus storyline all coming to quite a climax. I won’t spoil the latter half of the film, but let me just say I thought the Fergus storyline was so unnecessary. I usually love John Lithgow in anything, but his talent was wasted for this throwaway storyline.
I also thought that not having Jesse or Bumper (Adam DeVine) in this one was a bummer. They contribute to the greatness of the first two films, and they should have been included in this one somehow. The plot seemed to progress quickly and there didn’t seem to be the heart or chemistry that was present in the previous ones. It did wrap up the individual characters’ stories quite well in the end and there were a handful of laughs throughout, but all in all, I thought a much better job could have been done with Pitch Perfect 3.