Review: Praise This



On April 7, streaming service Peacock released their original movie, Praise This, starring Chloe Bailey. I was elated when I saw the trailer for the first time on the TV commercial break. Knowing that Bailey is a marvelous actress who has been in ABC’s show Grownish and made the Grammy Award nominated album, Ungodly Hour, with her sister Halle Bailey, I was destined to watch this movie.

The movie kicks off with Sam, played by Chloe Bailey, being dropped off by her dad to her Uncle and Aunt’s house in Atlanta Georgia because her safety living in downtown L.A. ceases to exist. Angered by her father’s decision she tries to find a way to kindle connections with producers in the city of ATL, so that she can make a name for herself in the music industry. Accompanying her is her cousin Jess, played by Anjelika Washington, who is a very holy person. She loves painting and is a part of the gospel group that failed, miserably at their last competition, the Oil Factory. She has yet to go to college and become the independent woman that her parents want her to be. 

Sam is invited to a house party that famous rapper and producer Ty, played by Quavo, is hosting. Sam and Jess lie to her aunt and uncle and head off to the party. While at the party, Sam gets Ty’s attention and is invited to record a song with Ty just before the party is shut down by the police. One of the police officers recognizes Jess and they are escorted home. Since Sam and Jess were caught lying about attending the praise team rehearsal by her guardians, Sam’s punishment is to join the praise team. Although Sam is upset by her setback, she is unfazed because her ultimate goal of getting Ty’s attention was achieved and now she can find time to record with Ty and kick start her music career. 

Sam, after being caught performing music that she put on Ty’s flash that she stole. She gets advice from a gospel singer from the bar who understands her more than she expects. Sam then starts a relationship with God and her life turns around for the better. She fixes her mistake with Ty and she mends her relationship with her dad. Ultimately the Oil Factory slays the day and takes home their first-place trophy from the praise team competition.

One thing that stuck out to me throughout listening to the soundtrack was the fact that the music producers were able to turn all types of secular “classics” into songs about Jesus like 1 Thing by Amerie, How to Love by Lil Wayne, What’s Poppin by Jack Harlow, and Savage by Megan Thee Stallion. The remix that I was flabbergasted by the most was Cardi B’s song, Money. It was incredibly ironic knowing that the remix was made possible considering that Cardi B is a not so PG rapper. I found their decision to include originals and remixes creative because although they have incredible gospel artists on the set like Koryn Hawthorn it hooks my attention more knowing that this song was a song released by a popular rapper or R&B artist.

I loved how the movie also included a lot of popular gospel songs like, Break Every Chain by Tasha Cobbs Leonard and Total Praise by Richard Smallwood. Not only do these musical choices unite people who don’t listen to gospel and people who are gospel fanatics, but I think that it creates a space where different groups of listeners can respect where each other’s music comes from and they’re able to enjoy their common love and faith in God.