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Honor Society Film Ending Explained

The ending of Honor Society reveals a twist where Michael manipulates Honor, leading her to reevaluate her priorities and ultimately choose integrity over ambition.

Honor Society, a 2022 comedy film, explores the high school life of Honor Rose. The film, directed by Oran Zegman, stars Angourie Rice, Gaten Matarazzo, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. It has received praise for its unique take on high school drama.

Honor’s Ambitious Plans

Honor Rose, a high school senior, dreams of getting into Harvard. To achieve this, she needs a recommendation letter from her guidance counselor, Mr. Calvin. Honor devises a plan to eliminate her top competitors: Travis, Kennedy, and Michael.

Honor’s strategy involves manipulating her competitors. She joins the theatre club to stage Kennedy’s play, hoping it will distract Kennedy. She encourages Travis to join the production, diverting his focus from sports. Meanwhile, she befriends Michael to sabotage his academic standing.

Honor’s plans start to unravel as she develops genuine feelings for Michael. Their relationship grows, complicating her initial intentions. This leads to a public display of affection, shocking their classmates. Honor begins to question her manipulative tactics.

The Big Twist

The film takes a dramatic turn when Michael reveals he has been manipulating Honor all along. He aims to secure the Harvard recommendation for himself. This revelation shatters Honor, leading to a breakup and a reevaluation of her priorities.

Honor decides to let go of her cutthroat ambitions. She records one of Calvin’s inappropriate advances and uses it to blackmail him into giving the recommendation letter to Kennedy instead of Michael. This act signifies Honor’s transformation from a self-centered individual to someone who values genuine relationships and integrity.

In the final scenes, Honor embraces her new circle of friends and finds contentment in her high school life. She helps Kennedy come out of her shell and supports Travis in publicly coming out. Despite not securing the Harvard recommendation for herself, Honor is joyful with her newfound friendships and a more authentic life.

Themes and Analysis

Academic Competition

Honor Society explores the intense pressure and competition that high school students face. Honor’s willingness to go to any lengths to achieve her goal reflects the extreme measures students might take to secure their future.

Integrity and Relationships

The film underscores the value of integrity and the importance of forming genuine relationships. Honor’s transformation from a manipulative schemer to a supportive friend highlights the significance of personal growth and ethical behavior.

Mentorship and Authority

Mr. Calvin’s inappropriate behavior and the power dynamics at play in the recommendation process shed light on the potential for abuse of authority in educational settings. Honor’s decision to expose Calvin’s misconduct serves as a critique of such power imbalances.

Critical Reception

Honor Society received generally favorable reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an 85% approval rating based on 20 reviews. Metacritic reports a weighted average score of 66 out of 100, indicating “generally favorable reviews”. Critics praised the performances of Rice, Matarazzo, and Mintz-Plasse, as well as the film’s unique blend of high school drama and dark comedy.

Notable Reviews

  • Glenn Kenny of The New York Times commended the film’s formal and thematic sophistication.
  • John Anderson of The Wall Street Journal highlighted Angourie Rice’s performance, describing it as both palatable and charming.
  • Tomris Laffly of Variety called the film a “surprisingly compelling high school caper” with a genuinely unexpected twist.


Honor Society is a thought-provoking film that delves into the sophisticatedities of high school life, academic competition, and personal growth. Its ending, marked by Honor’s transformation and the exposure of Michael’s deceit, offers a compelling resolution that emphasizes the importance of integrity and genuine relationships. The film’s critical acclaim and positive reception underscore its success in blending humor, drama, and social commentary.


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