Hoover Street Revival review

As directed by Sophie Fiennes (yet another of the hyper-talented Fiennes clan), Hoover Street Revival isn't so much a documentary as a rockumentary: a celebration of one charismatic, all-stops-out performer.

But the focus isn't a rock star - it's a preacher. Bishop Noel Jones of the Greater Bethany Church in South Central LA delivers his sermons in a series of incantatory, rhythmic gasps that rouse his congregation to yelps of near-orgasmic frenzy. Meanwhile his backing group - - sorry, choir - - belt out the gospel numbers with heartfelt fervour. In between services the film's temperature drops a little in its vignettes of life in downtown LA which - - surprise, surprise - - proves to be tough, violent and poverty-stricken. But things heat up each time we home in on the church.

Jones' line is more psychobabble than hellfire (""the arrangement of the world is moved by the eon of the world" -" - what is this, The Matrix Reloaded?), but there's no mistaking his inspirational power. Turns out his sister is diva Grace Jones. Showbiz wizardry doesn't run in this family - - it gallops.

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