Pitch Perfect 2: Avoid the pitfall of comedy sequels

While “Mad Max: Fury Road” does a masterful job of weaving a feminist message into an action film, “Pitch Perfect 2” smashes stereotypes straight out of a Spice Girls song over viewers’ heads like that annoying song you can’t get out of your head stuck on repeat for hours on end.

That song, by the way, in “Pitch Perfect 2” is the Pitbull song “Timber” featuring Kesha.

For a film designed to celebrate individuality and diversity, the second a Capella theatrical go-round is the ultimate vanilla of films, providing audiences with absolutely nothing that they haven’t seen before.

“Pitch Perfect 2” is what happens when you take a mediocre, fourth season episode of the television show “Glee” and perform a ‘mash-up’ with the script to 1994’s “D2: The Mighty Ducks,” which featured a young Joshua Jackson taking a rag-tag group of hockey players into international competition, representing America against an evil European squad clad in black.

Sound familiar?

Everything about this off-pitch sequel is nothing more than a rehash of the first film in the franchise and the answer to the question romantic comedy audiences ask for about five seconds after they leave the theater, but before they realize they don’t care: “I wonder what happens to those characters in like five years.”

The biggest mistake made by screenwriter Kay Cannon is relegating Academy Award-nominee Anna Kendrick to the background in a franchise that only exists because of her leading performance in the 2012 original.

The film lacks the dynamic personality and wry charm that Kendrick feels most at ease in, with Cannon opting to write the franchise’s star off as a secondary plot element to give more screen time for poorly timed jokes about weight and sex issues.

With her career living in the shadow of her own Fat Amy character, Rebel Wilson continues to stumble down the haphazard path of Melissa McCarthy down the track to one-trick pony land.

Because remakes are the kitsch films to make in Hollywood, it feels like a “Thelma and Louise” reboot with McCarthy and Wilson inevitably has to be a year or two away. Some poor screenwriter has to have tossed this around at some point, right?

Perhaps it’s the comedy genre that suffers most in the second go-round. Originality isn’t as essential in B-rated action films, as has been proven on six occasions by the “Fast and Furious” franchise.

Did we not learn our lesson from “Caddyshack II” that comedy sequels are a bad idea?

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