“Praise This” Movie Review

Story posted April 20, 2023 in

Is this move actually praise worthy?

If you have been waiting for the Christian version of Cardi B’s “Money” then Peacock’s original movie “Praise This” is for you.

This film is not meant to be satirical but walks the line between creating religious visibility and making fun of Christianity. However, they do not walk it well.

Chloe Bailey stars in the film as angsty teenager Sam, who is sent to go live with her aunt, uncle and cousin Jess in the south. Her father forces her to do this after she gets a misdemeanor in their hometown of LA.

She is mad because he is ripping her away from her music because of course, she is a musician. Every misunderstood, rebelling teen is of course in touch with their musical side.

Cousin Jess is the comedic relief. She does not accomplish this by being actually funny but by being so cringy that you can’t help but pity laugh.

Anyhow, cousin Jess is a part of her church’s praise team which is like the “Pitch Perfect” of church. According to this film, Atlanta is the prime location for praise teams and also trap music.

Shortly after the girls’ first appearance at the church, they sneak out of their house to go to local rapper T.Y.’s house so Sam can finally pursue her music career. Now you would think that two teenagers breaking into a celebrity party would be frowned upon, but don’t worry Sam started singing in the middle of the party, and that gave them the all clear to stay.

It is hard to believe that the cringe-fest that was her singing in the middle of the party was not the best part, but T.Y. being played by Quavo is actually what sends this scene into absolute disbelief.

After his role in the movie, Quavo has come out saying that he might release a gospel album.

Anyhow, the two girls get in trouble for sneaking out, and Sam’s punishment, shockingly, is to join the praise team. Bailey’s character immediately becomes comparable to  Becca from “Pitch Perfect”. She doesn’t want to be there but is undoubtedly the best on the team.

Mean girl Melissa on the team ends up leaving them at the first competition to be on another team and then Sam has to step up and lead the team.

There are four separate competition scenes in the movie and it is unbelievable how each one becomes more and more shocking. The wanna-be Christian versions of Beyonce’s “Savage” and Jack Harlow’s “What’s Poppin” is unexpectedly impressive, but also borderline offensive.

The entire movie is very predictable and has very few if any shocking moments. At some point in the movie, Sam becomes a Christian and makes amends with her dad, but this happens so quickly and is for the most part irrelevant to the plot that it was forgettable.

While the plot of this movie has been done several times before, the religious spin makes it new and intriguing until you actually start to watch it. The almost parody-like film makes up for its lackluster storyline with the music.

Some of the songs featured in the film are remixes of gospel and worship songs which are refreshing takes on old classics. While other songs in the film are appalling religious variations of current pop and rap songs.

All in all, this movie was definitely interesting, to say the least. It is hard to say whether this movie is worth recommending to others.

Rating: 2/5

Savannah Swartz is a second-year communications major. To contact her, email sms9072@psu.edu.