HONK FOR JESUS. SAVE YOUR SOUL. has generated plenty of positive buzz during Sundance ’22 and rightfully so. The mockumentary style dramedy is a clever fictional expose on megachurch pastor Lee-Curtis Childs (Sterling K. Brown) and first lady Trinitee Childs (Regina Hall) who are trying to rebuild and rebrand their church after a sexual abuse scandal.
Similar to last year’s “The Eyes of Tammi Faye,” this film highlights a minister’s fall from grace and the relationship dynamics with a wife who’s attempting to support at all costs. It’s also an indictment on abuses of power, toxic relationships and acts of complacency and complicity.
About half way through, the film turns way more serious than it starts, which left me somewhat conflicted, but the performances within never wavered.
Hall is extraordinary as the longsuffering Trinitee with her natural comedic timing and an equally impressive dramatic turn, and Brown plays Lee-Curtis with all the arrogance, vanity, and contemptuousness required of the character.
And a supporting turn by Nicole Beharie, as a former congregant and new first lady of a competing church, is just a gift and solid performance from the chameleon-like actress. What can’t she do is truly a question that always comes to mind with her portrayals.
“Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.” is humorous, heartbreaking and angering simultaneously, and an interesting critique on the prosperity gospel and megachurch culture – and those that appear to thrive and prey within it.
I rate it 3.5 out of 5 on the MMTrometer.
Until next thought, Thomasena
PS: I had to cancel participation at a roundtable with the AAFCA Fam for this one, but you can enjoy it below with panel Regina Hall, Sterling K. Brown, writer/director Adamma Ebo and producer Adanne Ebo.