Things About Pitch Perfect You Only Notice As An Adult

Pitch Perfect star Anna Kendrick might not have thought that the now iconic film would be a success, but a legion of fans quickly proved her wrong. The franchise has become wildly popular, as has the film's breakout song "Cups." There's a lot more to this movie than catchy tunes, though you may not notice them right away. Many of the most intriguing (and disturbing) details in Pitch Perfect will likely only be noticed if you're an adult. 

Most of these students look older than the average college student

If you, like me, think that the main stars of the film look way older than the characters they're portraying, you're absolutely right. The core of the cast was well into their twenties when Pitch Perfect was filmed. Anna Kendrick was born in 1985, making her roughly a decade older than the college freshman she was playing. In fact, all of the other main cast members, Skylar Astin, Rebel Wilson, Anna Camp, and Brittany Snow were all born in the 1980s — several years before their characters would have been born.

Beca made racist assumptions

Upon meeting your Asian roommate, your first question should not be about how well they speak English — but that's exactly what Beca does when she walks into her dorm room for the first time. Not only is this incredibly offensive, but it's also ignorant. Most Asians living in the United States speak proficient English. Beca's relationships with her roommate remains frosty throughout the rest of the movie and, after that introduction, you really can't blame Kimmy Jin for disliking Beca.

This school sends a messed up message to its students about sexual assault

When Beca arrives on campus and is handed a rape whistle, she's told only to use it if something is actually happening. This is supposed to be a comedic moment, but it also indicates a very real problem on college campuses. Those who commit sexual assault often go unpunished by their schools. Most sexual assault victims will not report the crime, and even in the cases that go reported, only a fraction of the perpetrators are arrested.

They're drinking underage in a public space on campus without any concern

Drinking underage is one thing, but doing it outside in a public space seems like a terrible idea. While some of the upperclassmen might be old enough to drink, there are definitely a few freshman teenagers at the initiation night party. Aren't they worried that campus security is going to come and bust them? And if there is no campus security, that brings us back to the problem of the school not being invested in the safety of its students.

Why is it important that a potential Barden Bella can read sheet music?

When the Barden Bellas are recruiting new members, they specifically ask people if they can read sheet music. While this is an important skill, in no scene do we actually see a Bella reading music. They seem to learn most of their numbers by ear and are shown to be good at improvising, so there's no real reason that they should need to know how to read music.

Beca doesn't seem to realize how big of a deal a free college education is

The first time I watched this movie, I sympathized with Beca and her desire to follow her dreams. Several years (and several thousands of dollars in student debt) later, I'm suddenly on her dad's side. Does she not realize how ridiculously expensive college tuition is? Has she not heard of the student debt crisis? Millions of people in the U.S. owe a combined total of $1.4 trillion dollars. A 2016 college graduated left school with an average of $37,000 in student loans. Beca should be jumping at the chance to go to college for free.

When do these kids go to class?

The Barden Bellas are intense. So intense that you have to wonder if they are actually enrolled in school. Their rigorous practice schedule hardly leaves any room for going to class, let alone studying for exams and writing papers. How do they fit in rehearsal two hours every single day, plus cardio, plus actually getting a college education? They don't seem to be worried about grades at all.

Pencil skirts are not great for singing in

Anyone who has ever worn a form-fitting pencil skirt knows just how confining they can be. They might look stylish, but they're not really the best choice for a singing group's uniforms. Singers need more space than a pencil skirt allows in order to breathe properly. The breaths a singer takes are deeper and bigger than normal breaths, meaning that that abdomen needs space to expand, and a pencil skirt just doesn't leave enough room to do that.

There is a lot of fat shaming going on

There are way too many fat jokes in Pitch Perfect for comfort. It's really a shame that Rebel Wilson's comedic chops are stifled in this movie. She never gets a chance to show off her range since all of her scenes are centered around her weight. Her first scene in the film, where she introduces herself as Fat Amy, was actually cut short. In the original clip, there are even more cringe worthy lines about her size.

And that's not all. When the Bellas go to their first competition, the commentator makes some nasty remarks about how the Bellas don't look as good as they used to, a comment that seems to be directly linked to the two plus-sized women who have been added to the group.

Most of the racial minorities are used as comic relief

Hollywood has a problem with diversity, and Pitch Perfect is an example of this. There are very few racial minorities in the film, and most of them are used for comedic relief. Beca's Asian roommate, Kimmy Jin, only has a few lines. Lilly, an Asian member of the Bella's, is shown to be very quiet and strange; in one scene she is scene rolling in vomit. Cynthia-Rose, an African-American member of the Bellas, has a powerful set of pipes but most of her storyline consists of the rest of the Bellas making not-so-subtle comments about her sexual orientation.

This might not be quite so problematic if the cast were not overwhelmingly white. The fact that there are very few people of color in the cast combined with the fact that they always seem to be used as comedic punchlines, however, is a problem.

How have these commentators not been fired?

The commentators at the a cappella competitions are the worst. They've clearly been inserted into the movie to add yet another element of humor, but in real life there's no way that this level of unprofessionalism would be allowed. Almost everything said by the commentators is grossly inappropriate. The male commentator is especially terrible and he is shown to be demeaning towards women. His sexist comments would get him fired in real life. 

Who is funding this group?

Those buses that the Bellas and the Trebletones are riding cost hundreds of dollars a day. If the competitions are held far enough away that the a cappella groups need to rent a bus, it's probably safe to assume that the trips are overnighters and they'll need hotel rooms, too. Who is forking over all the money for these competitions? We never see the Bellas fundraising for money (not that they have the time). So who is bankrolling them?