“Becky” is Clearly a Special Girl! Purchase the Blu-ray by Clicking the Below Cover!
Cancer has taken Becky’s mother away from her. Over the past year, the 13-year-old girl finds comfort in being angry, especially at her father who choose to move forward with his life that stirs a flurry of pent up uncomfortable, rage-filled emotions inside the teen. As Becky stays in her constant stew of angst, her father surprises her with a trip to their cabin getaway he initially planned to sell but had a change of heart. There is one small caveat, he plans to propose to his girlfriend who joins them on the trip, cornering Becky into one-sided fight and meltdown with those who love her and care for her and sending her to retreat into her woodland fort. At the same time, a group of escaped convicts take her family hostage in search for a mysterious key left behind by the escapee’s neo-Nazi leader, Dominick. Dominick has planned for years every possible scenario to secure the key that will undoubtedly serve every race with what he thinks they deserve, but Dominick didn’t plan for one scenario: Becky.
Amongst the movie nerds, there’s a particular phenomenon that occurs when a film is first mentioned across the internet and an immediate acclaim and attraction follows in its wake toward the film’s actors or actresses flipping the script on their stereotyped industry roles and playing totally unorthodox personalities that may shock. “Becky” was one of those films. The 2020 released home-invasion, revenge thriller has been labeled by critics and fans alike as a horror, but the Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion codirected production is more than just blood and guts. The Ontario, Canada production is based off an original and debuting script from Nick Morris with “The Devil to Pay” and “Rattle the Cage” screenwriting husband and wife team, Lane and Ruckus Skye who have specialized credentials in the thrillingly brutal, hardnose character genre. With a punk energy and engrossing family themes, “Becky” is a heart-stopping, heart-stomping, mischief making, ball of fury. Jordan Beckerman of Yale Entertainment (“Cut/Print”) and Boulderlight Pictures’ J.D. Lifshitz and Raphael Margules (“Barbarian”) serve as the U.S. production companies in association with Bondit Media Capital, SSS Entertainment and Buffalo 8 Productions and is presented by Quiver Distribution and Redbox Entertainment.
Aforementioned, this strange manifestation of hype for an upcoming feature leads the world, or at the very least film aficionados, in extreme anticipation. The conspicuously, incongruous piece glimpsed briefly in the trailer, one-sheet, posters, and stills claws for our attention as our brains can’t quite compute or process Kevin James in an Aryan acolyte. With a shaved head, long beard, and covered in swastikas, SS doppel sigrune, and other various Nazi-symbolic tattoos, Kevin James transforms his loveable and comedic “Paul Blart: Mall Cop” and “I Pronounce You Chuck & Larry” self into a ruthless and irredeemable skinhead. James absolutely nails the look of escaped convict and neo-Nazi Dominick with growing out his facial hair and shaving his head that takes his usually unassuming presence to a whole new level of calculated evil, but the script spoon feeds Dominick too much leeway to tolerate insubordination amongst his four-man crew, to allow hostages to talk back, spit in his face, and antagonize against his goals, and lacks the know-how of how to appropriately bait Becky with her own family, if Dominick is truly a despicable person as we’re lead to believe in earlier scenes of an approved prison leadership shanking and the implied murdering of children sitting in the backseat of a family roadster he aims to hijack. Yet, Dominick allows to be taken advantage of despite his cruelty stating to the contrary. In a stark contrast to evil embodied, there’s teenage girl Lulu Wilson. The New York City child actress has been quickly making a name for herself in the horror genre, as a scream queen prodigy of sorts, with having supporting roles in “Deliver Us from Evil,” Ouija: Origins,” “Annabel: Creations” and Netflix’s “The Haunting of Hill House” before landing the titular lead in “Becky.” Instead of scared pretense, Lulu Wilson gives a visceral, violent performance. It’s teenage angst on steroids. “Becky” is the only child versus adult cat-and-mouse game where the audience will get more out of the younger, smaller rival full of enraged paroxysms. Joel McHale is another comedic actor wiggling his way into more dramatic roles that expand not only his resume but his range to showcase the other side of the once syndicated television comedy host. From his stint into horror alongside Lulu Wilson in “Deliver Us From Evil” and in dark comedy, such as “Happily” that released the same year as “Becky,” McHale is finding a different voice other than laughter that has come natural to the actor and does show a lot of promise in more compelling roles as in “Becky’s” widowed father looking to move forward with his life but treads on pins and needles with his angry daughter. Those relationship complications between Becky and her father never wander but rather do wonders for the connection on coming to terms with little go of the past. The robust range of characters continue with an eclectic and noteworthy remaining cast that includes Amanda Brugel (“The Handmaid’s Tale”, “The Infinity Pool”), former Canadian-turned-actor Robert Malliet (“Pacific Rim,” “300”), Ryan McDonald (“He’s Out There”), James McDougal (“Heinous Acts”), and Isaiah Rockcliffe (“Random Acts of Violence”).
Kids committing hyper-violence in films is not entirely uncommon but they’re also not run-of-the-mill either. Yet, films like “Becky” produce an unsettling affect that churns in the back of our psyche when witnessing a young teen girl intently stabbing a grown man with a jagged ruler and a handful of colored pencils in the neck. Fans and critics label “Becky” as an adult, violent version of “Home Alone,” but the comparison I would draw would be closer to “Die Hard” for the barely young adults. “Becky” plays out like a graphic novel or a young adult novel, stylish and impulsive in its edgy execution and character. Unlike “Home Alone,” hardly anything sweet and endearing radiates from Milot and Murnion’s ferocious family retaliator and though Becky may set a trap or two (really just one trap) to inflict pain and punishment on her pursuers, the youngster is more inclined to John McClane wing it as the plot plays out, going toe-to-toe, face-to-face with adults two and three times as big as her without a moment of hesitation. There are some unique and graphic death scenes that ooze Becky’s personal satisfaction, and the Derek Liscoumb (“Possessor”) special effects blood reel is perforating, shredding, and cutting to pile on perfection as the kills go deeper into mutilate pool. Tremendous raw emotion superhumanly strengthens Becky’s adrenaline rush as the tragedies aggregate into one big horrific destruction of familyhood, contradicting the first act’s despisal of her father with a regret-filled, redemptional theme that without family there’s nothing else to lose. Its powerful for Becky to lose people she, in the moment, abhors yet are close to her because of her own unworked out pain and suffering that in all innocence pit her against the world.
“Becky” is the quintessential diamond in the rough as an unsurprising hit with fans. This small, independent Canadian film can hold its own in story, style, and sanguinary. With a sequel in the works, entitled “The Wrath of Becky,” our friends at Ronin Flix have released a collector’s edition Blu-ray to enlighten those new to Becky’s inherent mean streak. Released on an AVC encoded BD50, the feature is presented in 1080p high-definition on a widescreen 2.39:1 aspect ratio. Nothing to particularly note negatively on the digitally recorded image quality to the tune of compression storage as there doesn’t appear to be an issue with a clean-cut picture that delineates the hell out of the image, capturing every contour, fiber, and skintag inconvertible. Colors are potent with a natural grade along with plenty of textures to salivate over with a palpable tongue, such as Becky’s wool hat or Kevin James’s thick beard. The compressed image unloads at a gloriously hefty 36-38Mbps. The CE comes with two lossless English audio options – a Dolby Digital 5.1 Master Audio and a Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo. Unless your audio outputting on the television speakers, the surround sound is the optimal and preferred choice for “Becky’s” unmanage mischief making through the rustling brush. The small aspects of her plotting and executing her revenge are what give the ambient padding meaning and offer a plentiful and grotesque semiliquid, semi-flesh sound effects. Dialogue comes through clean, clear, and robust. Optional English subtitles are available in SDH. Over 60 minutes of bonus features are on this release with interview commentary by directors Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion, an interview with Joel McHale, and an interview with Lulu Wilson that all pretty much do a similar roundtable of remarks of their time and experiences working with each other. Milott and Murnion provide more backgound, backstory, and insight to their directing process compared to solo directors. Behind-the-scenes gallery, fan art, audio commentary with Lulu Wilson and screenwriters Ruckus and Lane Skye, and individual pre-feature introductions by the directors. Physical features include a cardboard slipcover of composite art by Tim Johnson, which is also on the latch-featuring clear snapper case cover art, a reversible cover art featuring a solo Lulu Wilson, and an anime-esque, illustrated disc art by Andrea Michel. The Blu-ray is rated R for strong bloody violence, graphic images, and language with a runtime of 94 and is region A locked. “Becky” is brutal with blood and guts galore and is more fun than can be describe with Lulu Wilson delivering an atomically hot-headed performance and Kevin James sporting uncharacteristic, fascist tats.