Sundance 2022: “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul”

© Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples are places of worship and should not be for profit. However, what history has proven over and over again is that it has been used for profit, so much so that the preachers make enough money to own private jets. The question is, where did that money come from? “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul” does not explore the aspect of corruption but rather how the system is being used successfully, even if one is disgraced, to make a comeback without any issues.

Behind every man is a great woman. Trinite (Regina Hall) struggles to maintain her disgraced husband’s reputation by helping him bring back the congregation to the church. As they are getting ready for a big opening scheduled in a month, the woman is responsible to lift her husband’s soul, revive their church Wander To Greater Paths and reconcile their faith by all means. Shot in a faux-documentary style, “Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul” delivers more than you ask for.

Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown are as funny as they could get. The two actors are brilliant in every scene, showing what happens behind the scenes of a for-profit institution they have built. The use of God and His blessing is all over the film. The question is, do Trinite and her husband are standing by their own words? However, as the film progresses, you realize all that is necessary for them is bringing back thousands of churchgoers that might be taken away by the competitor that is soon to open in their neighborhood.

Written and directed by Adamma Ebo, the film offers biting humour, deeply profound lines and the whole meaning of what stands behind Trinite and Lee-Curtis’ quest. It’s a smart and wicked comedy that provides more truth than ever. Indeed, their characters believe in God, but the profit he can bring to their Church is as important as their faith. So the question is, do money and belief walk together? How can one prove that the institution does exist for people and not for making money? This film has its unique style to explain it, which is why it works from start to finish, thanks to the compelling performances and flawless direction.

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