Becky (2020)

A teenage girl goes to her family’s lake house with her father so he can tell her some important news. In the meantime, a group of violence convicts escapes and heads to the same lake house. The clash between the family and the convicts pushes Becky to take things in her own inexperienced hands.

Written by Nick Morris, Ruckus Skye, and Lane Skye, and directed by Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion, Becky is more of a revenge horror film than a home invasion thriller. The film has a story that starts almost like any other home invasion film, but once things get really going, things start to build toward horror and gore. The story itself goes a bit as expected for a while, until it takes a darker turn and Becky becomes the central character. She is given enough of a background to give the character some depth and a reason for lashing out, not that all teens need a good reason to be angsty. The way her backstory is built gives her more than just a teen girl with some anger issues, she has a reason for her anger, a reason to lash out, and then they give even more of a reason to go all out pissed off. This leads to a film that is all about her even though a lot of the hoopla over it has been about a different cast member than the lead.

Please the titular lead of Becky is Lulu Wilson who will be familiar to horror fans, but as she is growing/grown a lot, she looks different and she is more in charge of her acting which shows in how she handles the character of Becky. Playing her father is Joel McHale who plays him, at first, in a tone that makes it feel like he might be trying to hard to be the jovial dad to a girl dealing with incredible loss which comes off like something is off with his performance or like he’s not really grasping the material at hand.

Thankfully, once things really get started he shifts in his performance and it becomes more on point and easier to connect with. Now for the one performance everyone is looking for because of the almost novelty casting. Once the surprise effect of “OMG Kevin James is the bad guy” wears off, his performance becomes believable and he makes the transition from his sillier comedic roles to this make sense, a bit how Patrick Huard went from stand-up comic to dramatic horror actor lead in Evil Words (Sur Le Seuil). These kinds of performances show that comedic actors who have chops can actually act in other types of roles and really make them work. However, this film belongs to Lulu Wilson, it’s her film it’s her revenge. Here she shows some range that was there before, but is more evident. She gives a great performance as a lost young teen who goes from lashing out to fighting back.

Now, for something some won’t expect with this film, it’s gory. There is blood, there is violence, and it’s even a bit gross at times. The special effects here look great and they are allowed to be on screen for long enough to see that gore and appreciate (or hate) it. This works with the mood of the film as things advance and things go from 0 to 100.

Becky is a fairly fun revenge film with a lead who takes control and shows what a teen girl can do when she focuses her angst and energy on a plan and goes for broke. There is a lot in this film to unwrap and that leads to the viewer caring about the story one way or the other, meaning that they will love or hate it based on how they connect with which character.