‘The Wrath of Becky’: A Satisfying Bloody, Teenage Revenge Tale [SXSW 2023 Review]

Lulu Wilson in Wrath of Becky

In 2020, Cooties directors Cary Murnion and Jonathan Milott’s neo-Nazi revenge bloodbath Becky saw a limited, sporadic release thanks to the pandemic. Still, strongly because of Lulu Wilson’s unbridled performance as a rage-fueled teen, the film definitely left a mark. For the sequel, The Wrath of Becky, the one-two punch of Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote takes over the directing reigns this time around to hopefully expand on the original.

The backwoods mayhem from the first film is still on display here, even if the set pieces highlighting Becky’s wrath aren’t quite as impressive. At the start, Becky is trying her best to hide away her dark passenger and very active imagination as a small-town waitress. She finds a roommate and kindred spirit in Elena (Denise Burse), an aging woman who really loves Scrabble. Becky’s internal monologue becomes a boombox inside her head as she tries to stop fantasizing about killing her customers.

Just before she dies of boredom, a semi-threatening group of white nationalists plops down at a booth in Becky’s section. Calling themselves the Noble Men (an obvious nod and dig at the Proud Boys), they’re plotting some sort of half-brained insurrection. Becky gives them just enough sass and backtalk that they decide to follow her after her late shift. BIG mistake guys.

Once the supposed leader of the Noble Men is introduced (a fully committed Seann William Scott), The Wrath of Becky kicks into full gear after getting off to a bit of a slow start. The stage is set, and the killing can begin. This time around, Becky is much more prepared and steadily on the offensive. She’s toying with these imbeciles but it all almost seems too easy. Is she this resourceful or are they just that stupid?

Again, Wilson carries the weight here, and her presence is a welcome reminder of why Becky was a drive-in standout during COVID that managed to scrounge up over $1 million at the box office. Watching her run around in a patched-up red jumpsuit killing domestic terrorists with a crossbow is incredibly fulfilling. But it all ends up feeling a little hollow next to the younger Becky we knew before that was dealing with the loss of her mother. This is strictly a revenge tale. Becky just decides to get revenge in a matter of hours instead of waiting a few more years to really wallow in despair.

The Wrath of Becky leans on Wilson’s star-making charisma and over-the-top kills to deliver a very worthwhile sequel that also feels like a rushed construction to bridge into a threequel. And yes, the secret Masonic Nazi key from the original still has a small part to play. Genre fave Courtney Gains gets a bit of a spotlight as a woman-hating racist that horror fans will surely applaud despite him feeling a bit wasted in the part.

There are plenty of setups and showdowns in The Wrath of Becky that wind up being more satisfying because of Becky’s infectious glee during her survivalist killing spree. At first, the deaths themselves reflect Becky’s ingenuity; then they start to feel like an afterthought. That shouldn’t be a mark against The Wrath of Becky, necessarily, because the sequel establishes Becky as a formidable opponent up against inferior crooks.

With only a few years in between films, Wilson is even more commanding as a borderline psychotic on the verge of adulthood. She was born out of the feral tweener taking out neo-Nazis and Kevin James in the original. Now, she’s coming into her own as a comic book avenger that leaps off of the pages from the drawings in her journal (a book that should really be marked as evidence). If a third Becky film emerges, Lulu Wilson might emerge from the forest and take to the streets. Look out John Wick 4, The Wrath of Becky may be your protégé.

  • Wrath of Becky


Wrath of Becky is much more than a fantasy revenge tale about getting even with white trash nationalists and dumb-witted domestic terrorists.It’s an official coming out party for star-in-the-making Lulu Wilson.



Sign up for The Harbinger a Dread Central Newsletter