HONOR SOCIETY (2022)
Release Date: 07/29/22 [Paramount+]
"Honor's sole focus is getting into Harvard. Willing to do whatever it takes, Honor concocts a plan to take down her top three competitors, until things take a turn when she unexpectedly falls for her biggest competition."
OUR MOVIE REVIEW:
Last year I made my friends sit around my TV and watch a little film I love from 1999 called Election starring Reese Witherspoon and Matthew Broderick about a high school student who resorts to savage behavior to become class president. They loved it, just as I expected. I distinctly remember us talking about how we would not get another film as dark and witty in such a specific way. That is, until now.
Honor Society takes notes from some of the best high school romps of the last twenty years. My first thought was modern day Election with the integrity of Easy A, while the main character Honor reminds me of an academic Regina George in an alternate reality, among several others you’ll probably be able to think of. She comes off as self-centered because she is, but also because she knows what she wants. The adults around her were ready to change the world at her age, but ended up back in their old neighborhood. She doesn't want that for herself.
The filmmakers mold the comically white main character around her privilege. She sports a red peacoat to symbolize her worship of the "Handmaid's Tale" novel, which to me is meant to show her inability to see the irony in that story. However, she soon realizes that maybe she could use her own advantages to help her classmates, instead of putting them at an even further disadvantage than they might already be in. Honor's character arc was more interesting than expected, and it was enjoyable to watch throughout.
Angourie Rice is a spitfire as Honor. She dazzled me the whole time, the same way the Heathers do. I’m still stunned by her work in The Nice Guys, which I just rewatched recently. It was also great to see Gaten Matarazzo in a modern setting that's not the 80s, showing us another side of his talent. The rest of the cast was great, as they complimented each other so well that it almost felt like an established series.
With all that being said, it wouldn’t surprise me if this was dubbed the new teen comedy hit. It was well thought out and I enjoyed it for where it honors its predecessors (pun intended), to where it deviates and becomes its own thing in the end.
Kick off your weekend by giving this one a go, streaming now on Paramount +!