PITCH PERFECT 2, MAD MAX and Quick Hitters re Varda, Bigelow, Holmes and more — Brandy McDonnell comments

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elizabeth-banks-in-pitch-perfect-2To quote the Beyonce song used in one of Pitch Perfect 2’s musical numbers, girls do indeed run the world — at least at this weekend’s domestic box office. The musical comedy reprise about an all-girls a cappella group surpassed industry expectations to gross some $70.3 million in the US and Canada, making it the highest opening weekend earner in Hollywood history for a first time director — Elizabeth Banks, who also produced and gives a stunningly funny performance as an acid-tongued a cappella commentator. The ensemble is mostly women, and Kay Cannon wrote the script. So, Pitch Perfect scores big as a film by and about women. But there’s a feeling of deja vu…Read more>>

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Brandy McDonnell

Brandy McDonnell writes features and reviews movies, music, events and the arts for The Oklahoman, Oklahoma's statewide newspaper, and NewsOK.com, the state's largest news Web site. Raised on a farm near Lindsay, Okla., she started her journalism career in seventh grade, when she was elected reporter for her school's 4-H Club. Taking her duties seriously, she began submitting stories to The Lindsay News, and worked for the local weekly through high school. She attended Oklahoma State University, where she worked for The Daily O'Collegian and earned her journalism degree with honors. She worked for three years at small Oklahoma dailies The Edmond Sun and Shawnee News-Star. In 2002, she joined The Oklahoman as a features reporter, writing about movies, the arts, events, families and nonprofits. She moved to The Oklahoman's entertainment desk in 2007. In 2004, she won a prestigious Journalism Fellowship in Child & Family Policy from the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Along with her membership in AWFJ, she also is a founding member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle. Brandy writes The Week In Women blog for AWFJ.org.