Pitch Perfect 2

In a word: a-ca-rappy

As with most sports-formula movies, the only place to go with an uninspired, financially mandated sequel is bigger, so the Barden Bellas are off to the world championships in Europe, where they face an arrogant, uber-the-top, nearly neo-Nazi German supergroup. Think SNL’s “The Sprockets” times ten. I’m aware that I am far from the target demographic here, but this is a movie column, and, cinematically speaking, this is two hours of fingernails on a blackboard.

The first movie was just as contrived, but at least it had a storyline and the soundtrack was worth a listen. (By the way, doesn’t a cappella mean “without instruments”? Where’d that drum line come from?) The tone-deaf direction by Elizabeth “Don’t-quit-your-acting-job” Banks lacks any sort of pacing, continuity, or momentum; the humor is alternatively pointless and offensive, the acting awful, the writing perfunctory, and the character development nonexistent.

Note to Anna Kendrick: please opt out of the planned second sequel and get on with your promising career. You look bored. Professional fat chick Rebel Wilson has a bigger part this time around. Some are saying this is a good thing—it’s not. In a word: a-ca-rappy. (155 min)