The Barden Bellas are back for another musical comedy romp in Pitch Perfect 3.
If you imagined this movie being totally aca-awesome, you might want to readjust your standards – but only by a little.
What the sequel lacks in narrative it makes up for in character development and hilarious hijinks.
The movie, directed by Trish Sie, kicks off with the Bellas reuniting for a special performance.
But when faced with the fresher, younger, brand new Bellas the team begin to realise their lives have not become what they hoped they would be.
Former Bella captain Aubrey (Anna Camp, True Blood) provides the team with the chance to perform together one last time on a European tour for American troops.
Beca (Anna Kendrick, Trolls), Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson, Bridesmaids), Chloe (Brittany Snow, Hairspray) and Emily (Hailee Steinfield, The Edge of Seventeen) join the rest of the Bellas on the trip around Europe.
The first stop is Spain where the Bellas learn that DJ Khaled will be hosting the tour and looking for a band to be his support act at a concert in southern France at the end.
Their fellow competitors include a bluegrass country music band, a hip-hop duo and an all-girl rock group called Evermoist, lead by the aggressive singer and guitarist Calamity (Ruby Rose, Orange is the New Black).
Right from the get-go the familiar competition motif of Pitch Perfect 3’s predecessors seems a little tired – until the instruments are introduced.
It’s a new challenge for the Bellas who rely only on their voices to create music.
For the Australian fans there is plenty to laugh about.
Fat Amy’s Aussie heritage is explored with plenty of laugh-out-loud references to our culture.
Nobody can argue that Rebel Wilson truly embodies the Fat Amy character but some of her backstory pushes the envelope well into the territory of ridiculousness.
But musical comedies are supposed to be fun.
As the Bellas learn what it is like to sing together again the film makes a strong statement about sisterhood and women supporting other women.
It’s a good message and it certainly gives the film a realistic, wholesome touch.