#MovieFailMondays: Pitch Perfect 2 (Or, How Movies Can Teach You About Logical Fallacies and Help You Ace the LSAT)

by

Manhattan Prep LSAT Blog - Movie Fail Mondays: Pitch Perfect 2 by Matt Shinners

Each week, we analyze a movie that illustrates a logical fallacy you’ll find on the LSAT. Who said Netflix can’t help you study? 🎥📖


Did you know that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person LSAT courses absolutely free? We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Pitch Perfect is a fantastic movie, a guilty pleasure with a soundtrack to which I go incognito on Spotify before listening. After taking in more money than anyone expected, they decided to release a sequel (which is the highest-grossing musical comedy of all time).

And if you’re worried that they couldn’t possibly match the original, you’ll be happy to hear that the sequel is pitch perfect, too.

The original Pitch Perfect saw the Barden Bellas (the fictional a cappella group that is the star of the film) win the national a cappella championships (which is apparently a real thing). The sequel starts with Rebel Wilson suffering a wardrobe malfunction in front of the president, thus leading to national disgrace and the hate of at least one Supreme Court justice (thanks, Obama!). They’re also banned from school or disbarred from a cappella…it’s unclear, exactly, but it’s bad.

Because of a loophole, however, they’re still allowed to compete at the World Championship, and like everything in which the world is on one side of the competition, the Germans are on the other. Das Sound Machine, the current front-runner, must be taken down in order for the Bellas to be reinstated at their college. Or the a cappella organization. Or something. The details aren’t important, guys!

Over the course of the film, the Bellas that we know and love from the first movie (and one plucky newcomer) live, laugh, learn, and love (Adam Divine), and struggle to find their voice so they can win at worlds and regain their position as a cappella royalty. And, since this is the type of film it is, of course they win.*

That’s right, the Bellas that we know and love win worlds! The Bellas. That we know and love. Three years later.

Wait, what?

The Bellas are now all seniors, and they haven’t recruited any new members (well, one). They pick up a plucky young legacy to serve as our proxy in the film, but, for the most part, the rest of the cast is exactly the same.

The movie pulls a similar trick on us that many LSAT questions pull: they treat one thing changing as if it won’t have any other effects. Here, time marches on, but the Bellas’ roster does not. Similarly, on the LSAT, we’ll often see the author make conclusions about the future based on what’s true of the present. While the present can project into the future, it’s not a guarantee. Which is what Brittany Snow’s Chloe, Ryan Reynolds’s Van Wilder, and most of you, as college seniors, know – the future can’t be predicted, even on the LSAT. 📝

*But, audience, let’s be honest – DSM won that battle.


Want to learn more about Logical Reasoning on the LSAT? Don’t forget that you can attend the first session of any of our online or in-person LSAT courses absolutely free. We’re not kidding! Check out our upcoming courses here.


Matt Shinners Manhattan Prep LSAT InstructorMatt Shinners is a Manhattan Prep instructor based in New York City. After receiving a degree in Biochemistry from Boston College, Matt scored a 180 on his LSAT and enrolled in Harvard Law School. There’s nothing that makes him happier than seeing his students receive the scores they want to get into the schools of their choice. Check out Matt’s upcoming LSAT courses here!

No comments yet