First, let me get this off my chest. Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown are outstanding in this movie! The rest of the cast hold their own, as well, but I can’t say enough about these two. Writer/Director Adamma Ebo creates a farce around their characters who are in the middle of a sex scandal. With the behavior of the pastor and his wife in this movie, we see the hypocrisy of big churches (southern Baptist types) and their preachers, who do not practice what they preach.
In mockumentary style (think Spinal Tap), Pastor Lee-Curtis Childs (Brown) and his wife, the first lady, Trinitie Childs (Hall), are being interviewed by a documentary filmmaker. After sexual allegations come out against Lee-Curtis, the pair are hopeful that a film about them will help clear their names. If that happens, their parishioners may come running back to witness the Childs’ triumphant resurrection.
What it comes down to for the audience of “Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul” is not just a funny film but a way to look inward and see that a pastor is just a person. That person is not to be worshipped but to be held to account or forgiven. In the movie, you’re presented with all the material you need to make a wise choice. It’s up to you.
Some of what you see here occurs in megachurches around the country, with little to no light cast upon it. Lee-Curtis isn’t so lucky as there is a mass exodus when what he did is exposed. He and Trinitie plan a comeback on Easter, expecting all of their flock to return once their beautiful, sprawling church, Wander the Greater Paths, is opened again. The documentary crew catches everything little thing they do and say, whether the Childs want them to or not. A scene that had the audience rip-roaring is when the once powerful couple is singing along with some Gangsta rap artist blasting from their speakers. They give the tune their all, not holding anything back whatsoever, no matter the words.
They often ask the film crew to cut, which gets big chuckles from everyone who’s paying attention to what the film’s subjects ask.
The dialogue is hilarious, even when revealing a heartbreaking situation. Our eyes also observe the self-importance and arrogance of the two; it gets more shockingly side-splitting when Trinitie shops.
Lee-Curtis thinks nothing of speaking to everyone about his cars, mansion, helicopter, and closet. The closet is in what can only be a converted church room. Showing off what’s in it is fun. They also love showing off the Prada they own in different colors and styles.
You can’t help but compare their behavior to preachers who live this same lifestyle. Still, you’ll also laugh at how the Childs present it, utterly clueless about how they look. Pay attention to the gum scene that makes a return later in the film.
The generally stoic Trinitie is greeted by a past member of their church. He handles the pulpit, she, the PR. This meeting puts her ill at ease, so much so that if one more brick is pulled out from under her, she’ll fall flat like a six-foot Jenga tower. Through it all, she stands by her man and does many things she would never have dreamed of, just as Robin would have for Batman. Oh, wait… that’s two men. *That’ll make sense later.
From Focus Features comes ‘Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.’
Writer/Director: Adamma Ebo
Starring: Regina Hall, Sterling K. Brown
Run Time: 1h 42m
Producers: Adamma Ebo, Adanne Ebo, Daniel Kaluuya, Rowan Riley, Amandla Crichlow, Kara Durrett, Jessamine Burgum,
Matthew Cooper, Regina Hall, Sterling K. Brown
*In Theaters and Streaming on Peacock Friday, September 2, 2022*