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[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43898[/img]

Title: Pitch Perfect: Aca Awesome Sing Along Edition

Movie: :3.5stars:
Video: :4.5stars:
Audio: :4stars:
Extras: :4stars:

HTS Overall Score:82




[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43906[/img]
Summary
Having reviewed the original 2012 release of "Pitch Perfect", much of my opinions and thoughts on the movie stay the same so this is much the same review as done 3 years ago. This new edition of the film carries across the same audio track and video encode as the prior release, but with the addition of $7.50 worth of movie cash to see 'Pitch Perfect 2' as well as a brand new extra. This extra happens to be the sing along edition of the movie, which features the ability to have the viewers sing along with the songs in traditional Karaoke style. Well, that and a brand new snazzy slipcover and artwork on the front.

I have to get this off my chest. I hate “Glee,” I hate “High school Musical,” and most other films in that genre. My wife wanted to drag me into seeing “Pitch Perfect” theatrically, and I did my best to “find something else to do,” if you know what I mean. I went into this review wondering if I needed a couple of beers to help me get through it. While “Pitch Perfect” is a bit peppy and too cute for its own good, sometimes it blindsided me. I honestly didn't expect to enjoy it nearly as much as I did. Instead of being another “Glee” knockoff, “Pitch Perfect” bares some fangs and adds a little bit of a harsher bite to the peppy musical numbers. While never gaining the same level of mockery that “Bring It On” did a decade or so ago, but it rises above its predecessors and does what any good movie can only hope to do: entertain the audience.

Barden University’s all-female A Capella group crashes and burns in last semester's national finals when one of their members loses her cool during a solo. A summer later, said member Aubrey (Anna Camp) has inherited leadership, and, along with other senior member Chloe (Brittany Snow), must scrape the bottom of the proverbial barrel and find the misfits and outcasts of the singing community in hopes that she can mold them into an award-winning musical team in hopes of claiming the glory denied her due to said horrible mishap. Beca Mitchel (Anna Kendrick), a freshman who just wants to placate her domineering father and get through a semester or two of college before leaving for Los Angeles to pursue a career as a DJ, is roped into becoming the final member of the Barden Bellas; ironically, the cute guy she’s been "not seeing" is initiated into the Bellas' on-campus competition: the Treble Makers. Beca makes no bones that she’s not a team player, but the Bellas need a drastic makeover to their tired old routine, and Beca looks like just the girl to make it happen.

Things go from bad to worse when Aubrey’s generic, over-used routine bores the competition judges to death and gets them eliminated from the contest. Beca tries to improvise on stage and nearly boosts them into the running, but it’s too little too late. With that final straw, the group falls apart; Beca leaves, Aubrey and Chloe are at each other’s throats, and the rest of the team seems to have lost the will to win. As fate would have it, a small technicality brings them back into the running, and the girls have to work together to mix things up as they've never done before in order to rise from good to great and defeat their rivals, the Treble Makers.

[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43914[/img]
“Pitch Perfect” treads a fine line between honoring the young talent they present on-screen, and mocking the entire “Glee” business model just like “Bring It On” did for the cheerleading community. The sharp repartee brings it to a more adult level, but never really seems to meet its true potential. I think here we have a case of the director trying to play it safe with a PG-13 rating instead of going for the jugular and having more freedom with an R rating. The jabs and pokes at the musical industry are witty and sharp-edged, but the film seems to lack conviction on just how strong it wants to come off. What really makes the movie work more than anything is the camaraderie and the performances of our leads. Anna Kendrick does a fantastic job as the conflicted Beca, and Aubrey and Chloe play a fantastic mean-spirited/sweet duo, giving a bit more a human feel to them. Some of the best lines actually come from the side characters, and when least expected (well, except for Rebel Wilson, who should never be allowed to act in a movie, PERIOD). Cute and dark at the same time, “Pitch Perfect” is a witty little comedy that surprised everyone; it came out of nowhere and sideswiped audiences, making 70 million dollars theatrically on a shoestring budget, with a sequel already on the way.






Rating:

Rated PG-13 for sexual material, language and drug reference




Video :4.5stars:
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43922[/img]
Universal has given as an absolutely excellent 1.85:1 AVC encoded transfer. “Pitch Perfect” is a glitzy, shiny, and in-your-face type of movie, and the video transfer definitely mimics that feel. Bright colors shine from all angles; the flash of the stage and richly ornate costumes literally pop off the screen. Blacks are deep and inky without losing anything in the shadows or crushing the blacks blatantly. Facial shorts are detailed and clean, showing every pore and makeup mishap of our gorgeous stars. Long shots are good to excellent; the only thing that brings the video score down a tad is some post processing done to the film to give it a rather smooth and shiny look. That processing also robs us of some detail on the wide angle shots. I don’t see any obvious aliasing or haloing or any other compression artifacts, and as a whole I have to give a solid thumbs up to Universal’s work on this transfer.








Audio :4stars:
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43930[/img]
Let’s get this out and in front right off the bat. This is not a true musical, but a musically centered film, and as such, the music is the highlight of the show. The audio lights up the front stage and shines whenever the music begins. Bass is tight and punchy, only there to accentuate the musical numbers, but is very clean and distortion free - no bullets flying by our ears or explosions to make our subs cry for mercy, but a very nice musical quality to it nonetheless. I was worried about how the audio would fare, being that my last musical based film (Rock of Ages) had some serious dynamic range issues. Not to fear, “Pitch Perfect” is very well balanced and the range never strays to far up or down to cause any problems. The vocals are balanced right in the front stage and the music never overpowers or disrupts them one bit. While as excellent as the music and vocals are, the surrounds are used sparingly. This is a very front heavy, dialogue based comedy, and no amount of music will make that rear soundstage light up and totally envelope one into the center of the “action,” so to speak. For what it is, “Pitch Perfect” succeeds in spades, but its own limitations keep it from being an outstanding track. The Aca Awesome track is the same audio track, but also allows for Karaoke style subtitles to allow the singer to sing along with the actors.





Extras :4stars:
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=43938[/img]
• Aca-Awesome Edition Sing-Along Track (New)
• Directors Commentary
• Prodcuers Commentary
• Deleted and Extended Scenes
• Meanwhile...
• Line-O-Ramas
• Backstage at Barden
• A Look Inside
• On the Set: Burrito Drive By!
• Music Video





Overall: :4stars:

“Pitch Perfect” isn’t going to be a movie that wins any Oscars or evolve into a comedy cult classic, but it is funny and does what a movie should do: entertain the viewers. Director Jason Moore does an excellent job of balancing the genre mish-mashes while keeping the audience engaged and interested instead of being confused with such a drastic mix up of movie genres. Cute and funny, mean spirited and witty, they all describe it to a T. For fans of “Bring It On,” “Pitch Perfect” brings back that same wickedly funny jabs at the music industry that made “Bring It On” a guilty pleasure for all of us (myself included). For people who aren’t sure, or would only be caught watching this because a female dragged you to it, give it a chance; you might very well be pleasantly surprised. Given a boost by carrying over ALL of the original extras, PLUS the inclusion of the sing along tracks gives this edition a slightly higher rating as it brings a bit more to the table. Still worth it if you enjoy the genre and made even more enticing by the movie cash if you haven't picked it up yet.



Additional Information:

Starring: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow
Directed by: Jason Moore
Written by: Jay Cannon
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1, French DTS 5.1
Studio: Universal Studios
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 112 minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: May 5th 2015




Buy Pitch Perfect Aca Awesome Sing Along Edition On Blu-ray at Amazon


Recommendation: Check it out





More about Mike
 

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Loved the movie; watched it a dozen times, at least, but this is a hard-pass for me. No new and improved audio or video? My 2012 copy will do me just fine. :)
 

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I also have the 2012 version... Excellent review Peter. I am not a fan of musicals at all,but this one is a movie I can watch over, and over again and still want to watch it again. I have watched this movie at least 40 times in the last year (most of the time with my wife), but the rest of the time I have used it for checking the tune on my setup.

Strange thing is I find the surround works well in that it completely surrounds me with the acoustic cues needed to make me feel like I am actually there listening live (the magic of my setup?). This has become a go to for demoing our system for the people that don't want the loud action demos. My wife is ready to watch the new one in a couple of weeks too.
 

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glad I'm not the only one that liked this movie. I found it way funnier and more toe tapping than I expected it to be when I blind saw it. plus, who can complain when you're staring at a young Anna Kendrick for almost 2 hours
 

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glad I'm not the only one that liked this movie. I found it way funnier and more toe tapping than I expected it to be when I blind saw it. plus, who can complain when you're staring at a young Anna Kendrick for almost 2 hours
Anna is hot!
 

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Mmm hmmm! I also liked her in 'Up in the Air', too! Actually... anything she's in is automatically better! :)
 

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Haha Agreed! Shouldn't our man cards be turned in and upgraded for drooling over Anna?

I think you would have to turn in you man card if you were to be drooling over someone like Kristen Stewart... :)
 

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Haha Agreed! Shouldn't our man cards be turned in and upgraded for drooling over Anna?

I think you would have to turn in you man card if you were to be drooling over someone like Kristen Stewart... :)
her and her "many" emotions

 

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I'm not sure how drooling over Anna Kendrick makes you turn in your man card ;)
Haha Agreed! Shouldn't our man cards be turned in and upgraded for drooling over Anna?
ok, I see your angle, but,...I'd like to be a fly on the wall when you guys walk up to the register at Best Buy and hand the cashier Pitch Perfect...or when you're watching the NFL draft this weekend with your pals and a few cold beverages and you say "hey, do you guys want to watch Pitch Perfect?"...I mean we're not quite talking Lone Survivor, Blackhawk Down or Rambo here. This is what I call a 'closet watch'!
 

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Haha! Nope not one bit. I remember when I bought the blu-ray, I handed it to the cashier and he said, "Surpsingly, a very funny movie!" and I said "Yeah, I love it!"

I've geeked out and shared on my facebook each time trailers for #2 was posted!

Yeah, don't judge me.
 

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Haha! Nope not one bit. I remember when I bought the blu-ray, I handed it to the cashier and he said, "Surpsingly, a very funny movie!" and I said "Yeah, I love it!"

I've geeked out and shared it on my facebook each time trailers for #2 were posted!

Yeah, don't judge me.
Same here... We will be there on opening day to watch the sequel too. :T:T
 

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Funny thing is my wife had never seen the movie until about two weeks ago. Usually when I watched the movie, it was just to kill time or something by myself, or as something "on" in the background. So I finally said, "You need to watch this..."

When I popped the disc in and while it was loading she asked me sort of hesitantly, "Is this going to be one of those annoying movies?"

Confused and ever-so-slightly offended I asked, "... annoying movies?"

She said, "You know... like... broadway-ee..."

I kind of assumed she was probably thinking like 'Dream Girls' or something since she hated that. I just shrugged my shoulders and said, "This movie doesn't take itself seriously, but there is singing. It's A Capella and it's awesome."

Not sure if she "liked it," but she did laugh at things. Regardless, I'm sure she won't object to taking an evening away from the kids to go see the 2nd one with me. :)
 
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