Australian Council on Children and the Media

Pitch Perfect 3

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Not recommended under 14, parental guidance recommended 14 – 15 due to sexual references and coarse language.

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Pitch Perfect 3
  • a review of Pitch Perfect 3 completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 9 January 2018.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 14 Not recommended due to coarse language, sexual references and violent action sequences
Children aged 14 to 15 Parental guidance recommended due to coarse language, sexual references and violent action sequences
Viewers 15 and over OK for this group

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines.

Name of movie: Pitch Perfect 3
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Sexual references
Length 93 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

This is the third and final instalment of the Pitch Perfect trilogy. The Barden Bellas are an a cappella singing group who achieved fame and success in their college years but have now graduated and moved on with their lives. When coming together for a reunion, they realise how much they miss performing and singing together and decide to do one last tour as a group. Aubrey (Anna Camp) uses her family connections with the American military to get the Bellas a spot on the United Services Organisation tour, competing with three other bands to win the chance to support DJ Khaled in the final concert. For the first time, the Bellas find themselves with the challenge of competing against musicians who use instruments, not just their voices alone.

On the first leg of the tour, Amy (Rebel Wilson) is surprised by the arrival of her estranged ex-criminal father from Australia who has spent years tracking her down. Due to his shady past, Amy finds it hard to trust him and senses that he might have ulterior motives. As the tour comes to a close, Becca (Anna Kendrick) is confronted with a difficult choice about her future.

The Bellas must pull together and use their wits and their fabulous singing skills to make it through to the end of the competition, despite many unexpected and dramatic events.

Themesinfo

Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Singing groups; competition; relationships; personal growth

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some violence in this movie including:

  • A long action sequence in which Amy uses various martial arts moves and weapons to fight a series of security guards. She is threatened with a knife and she hits a man repeatedly with a frying pan. There is lots of punching and kicking. The scene ends with an explosion.
  • Amy is threatened by her criminal father.
  • The Bellas are kidnapped and find themselves locked in the back of a van. The van is lowered onto a ferry and they are held hostage on a yacht.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • A series of mishaps at a party causes the curtains to catch fire and a swarm of bees is released into the room.

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

Children in this age group may also be scared by the above-mentioned scenes.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

Nothing of concern

Over thirteeninfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

Nothing of concern

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • ‘Beats’ by Dre headphones
  • Urban Outfitters clothing company.
  • The performer and producer DJ Khaled.

Sexual references

There are frequent sexual references in this movie, including:

  • Two army officers walk towards the Bellas, in slow motion, with sexy music playing whilst the women gaze at them flirtatiously, primping their hair.
  • Fat Amy asks the officers whether they will be sharing a room together, going to first, second, third ‘base’ with them.
  • One of the Bellas falls in love at first sight with someone from another band. He says, “You smell like skittles, can I taste the rainbow?” She replies, “Oh you can definitely taste this rainbow”.
  • The Bellas are competing against another girl-band named ‘Ever moist’, which prompts jokes such as “My Grandma’s in a band right now: it’s called never moist’.
  • One of the Bellas finds herself holding the (clothed) breasts of another Bella as they hide together.
  • A close up of a man grabbing his crotch.

Nudity and sexual activity

  • During their performances, the Bellas wear sexy clothing and use provocative dance moves, such as running their hands over their bodies, twerking their hips, etc.
  • Becca and a music producer share flirtatious and lingering glances at each other.

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • The Bellas and other adults consume alcohol at bars or parties.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • “Clinging to you like mom jeans to a camel toe”
  • “Does your vagina suddenly feel not tight?”
  • Fat Amy’s father has named his boat the ‘Fat Dingo Bitch’ and Amy says “That’s what he used to call my mum”.
  • “butt cheek”; “ booty”; “shit”; “bum-crack”; “slutty”; “tarty”

In a nutshell

Pitch Perfect 3 is exactly what you would expect as the final instalment of the Pitch Perfect trilogy. It is a silly and light musical comedy which does not take itself seriously and has some great one-liners and catchy music. Although the film will appeal to younger tweens and teens, it is not recommended for those under 14 and parents may find the frequent sexual references and coarse language inappropriate.

The main message in this movie is that the support of friends is truly important and that real friends don’t hold each other back from success.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Growing up and moving on is part of life. Sometimes one phase of life must end before the next can begin.
  • Trusting your instincts and following your dreams.
  • Teamwork and sisterhood.

 Parents may also wish to discuss:

  • What is feels like to have a dysfunctional relationship with your father.
  • Misogyny and gender stereotyping: The commentator ‘John’ constantly makes quips about women not being capable of anything.

 

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