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Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul

MOVIE | Adamma and Adanne Ebo’s satire about prosperity gospel has the ring of truth about it

Steve Swisher/Pinky Promise LLC

<em>Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul</em>
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Rated R
➤ Theaters, Peacock
➤ S6 / V3 / L7*

The title of Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul should give you a hint that this movie isn’t really about saving souls. But it would also be wrong to write off this satirical mockumentary as another piece of anti-Christian propaganda. Honk saves its most scathing critiques for the religious hypocrite.

Pastor Lee-Curtis Childs (Sterling K. Brown) is a black pastor who preaches a prosperity gospel. But after sexual misconduct costs him his megachurch, he and his wife Trinitie (Regina Hall) don’t spend time in sackcloth and ashes. No, they plan a comeback on Easter Sunday. The oblivious pair agree to allow filmmakers to make a documentary chronicling that comeback, but instead it just exposes the depths of their sin and delusion.

Rookie directors Adamma and Adanne Ebo grew up in the black church, and even though this film is satire, it has the ring of truth about it, highlighting the sin and superficiality that can sully church life. Pastor Lee-Curtis’ pressed suits and First Lady Trinitie’s pressed-on smiles both warn us about a religion founded upon material success.

I can’t recommend Honk for Jesus. Foul language pervades the movie, which also contains an awkward sex scene. But Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul informs us about this cultural moment. Pastor Childs is hard to distinguish from the real-life pastors who tell parishioners to buy them jets, sports cars, and palaces. That’s what makes the film funny and painful—not because it’s made up, but because it’s too real.

*Ratings from kids-in-mind.com, with quantity of sexual (S), violent (V), and foul-language (L) content on a 0-10 scale, with 10 high

Juliana Chan Erikson

Juliana is a correspondent and a member of WORLD's investigative unit, the Caleb Team. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate and earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. Juliana resides in the Washington, D.C., metro area with her husband and 3 children.


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