The Honor List

Movie review by
Andrea Beach, Common Sense Media
The Honor List Movie Poster Image
Teen friendship drama has sexual themes, alcohol abuse.
  • PG-13
  • 2018
  • 103 minutes

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 1 review

We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Live life to the fullest; it's too short to hold onto grudges and hate. Friendships bring joy to your life and help you understand yourself better. Don't let friends slip away.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Isabella's a great role model for body positivity, but she bails out of things too quickly when they get tough. Sophie made a vow not to have sex before marriage and is a good model for sticking to it and for not letting others make her feel embarrassed about it, but she can be judgmental of others. Piper drinks heavily as a coping mechanism instead of dealing with her emotions and problems, but she's also the most committed to honoring her friend's last wish. Honor urges her friends not to hold onto the bad and to live life to the fullest.

Violence

A hazing ritual involves making aspiring cheerleaders take off their clothes and dance in bra and underwear only and body-shaming Isabella. One punch in the nose, one slap in the face, and a boy grabs at a girl's crotch. A nonviolent death of a teen.

Sex

A few brief kisses. Masturbation mentioned. A teen looks up how to get gum out of pubic hair, implying oral sex has taken place. Girls rip off their clothes in front of the whole school and are briefly seen fully nude from behind. Being a virgin or not discussed several times. A girl mentions she's on her period. Sexting is implied but nothing's shown. A teen boy is passed out on the sidewalk, wearing only boxers and socks.

Language

"S--t," "butt," "ass," "bitches," "slut," "ball sack," "hell," "bulls--t," and "f--k."

Consumerism

A few mentions of specific tech, car, pop culture, and beverage products.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A teen frequently drinks from a sports cup implied to have alcohol in it and acts drunk on several occasions; eventually she says she thinks she has a drinking problem. In a nightclub setting teens drink what appears to be soda. A parent drinks heavily, although we don't see him drink. Teens get drunk at a failed party. An adult shares a cigarette with teens; one of them coughs.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Honor List is a fairly edgy high school friendship drama. Oral sex is implied, virginity is discussed, masturbation is mentioned, and teen girls are briefly seen fully nude from behind. Profanity is infrequent but strong, including one "f--k" and several variations of "s--t." One main character and a minor character show alcoholic tendencies, there's one scene set in a nightclub, and teens drink to excess at a party. An adult shares a cigarette with teens. Violence includes a punch in the nose, a slap in the face, and an attempt to grab a girl's crotch. The main setup of the plot involves a teen's nonviolent death; her friends and family members are very sad about her passing.

User Reviews

Adult Written byJohanna H. May 20, 2018
Adult Written bydvdgirl May 19, 2018

wow this was good.

a movie about 3 girls making a pact for the lose of the friend. I thought it was nice and I intend to watch it again. good movie for teens.
Teen, 13 years old Written byJtalks951 May 12, 2018

Great!

Such a great movie! Has minor teen movie clichés, but overall is VERY original. A must watch!

What's the story?

During senior year of high school, three former best friends reunite to finish THE HONOR LIST. Back when they were freshmen, Isabella (Sasha Pieterse), Piper (Meghan Rienks), Honor, and Sophie were an inseparable quartet of BFFs. But by senior year the four had somehow drifted apart. When Honor unexpectedly dies, she leaves behind the request that the remaining three find and finish the bucket list they created of things to do before graduation. As they cross each item off the list, a lot of pain from the past comes back as well as the realization that they lost much more than they realized when they lost each other.

Is it any good?

This friendship drama has too many shortcuts in the story to appeal to a broad audience, but it should really resonate with teens in the throes of those years when friendships are everything. The Honor List's biggest shortcut is that the reason the friendships ended in the first place is never fully explained. Using the flashbacks to eventually reveal what really happened would have added interest, intrigue, and a satisfying payoff. But the way it's put together leaves an unsatisfying, "But why?" in the back of your mind.

The characters are engaging and diverse, not only physically but in terms of strengths and flaws, too. A wide range of teen viewers, girls especially, will easily relate to them and root for the power of friendship. The story's pretty predictable and ends on a hopeful, hanky-ready note. For teens mature enough to handle the sexual content and alcohol use, it's an OK choice for a sleepover movie.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the sex in The Honor List. Is it realistic? How much is too much to show in movies?

  • What about the alcohol use? Is it realistic? Do the characters experience any consequences?

  • What other movies have you seen about friendship? Which one do you like best? How does this one compare?

Movie details

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