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Blu-ray Review: A Look Back At 1988’s Cult Classic ‘Lady In White’


The Halloween season is upon us and I decided to kick off the most wonderful time of the year by taking a look at Scream Factory’s release of “Lady in White.” “Lady in White” is a movie that people have been telling me for years to sit down and watch. The premise of which never truly intrigued me so I put it off until I had the chance to check out this bluray. After viewing what is considered a Halloween masterpiece by most, I can’t help but feel a little let down.

The movie is about Frankie Scarlatti (Lukas Haas), a young boy just looking to celebrate Halloween in 1962. Being an odd child, fascinated by the macabre, Frankie doesn’t really get along with everyone in school. Tricked by a couple of bullies, he is locked in the classroom coat closet overnight. Throughout the night, Frankie is visited by the ghost of the first victim of a series of child murders. The killer is still out there and it’s now Frankie’s duty to bring him or her to justice!

'Lady In White'
‘Lady In White’

The Scream Factory release came with three different cuts and I decided to take on the 118 minute long Director’s cut…and boy did it feel like 118 minutes. This is not a bad film by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I feel if this movie was just a half hour shorter I would’ve loved it a whole lot more. It’s an old school Halloween movie that tries so hard to be a family film without actually being a family film. With elements of blatant child murder, pedophilia, and racism, this isn’t exactly an after school special. However, it’s paced like one. Right down to the “happy go lucky” music that plays as Frankie rides his bike through town. Everything is practically spelled out for us as we progress and the ending is rather predictable. I can’t help feeling that if I had seen this when I was younger I would appreciate it a lot more now. As I stated, this isn’t a children’s movie but it really felt like one. Throughout the film I kept being reminded of the Fox Family original movie “When Good Ghouls Go Bad”.

THE VERDICT: I know how beloved this movie is with horror and Halloween fans. So much so that I wanted to love it that much more. With a little trimming of the fat I truly believe I would have. The release itself is on par with similar releases by Scream Factory. While there are no new special features, there are three different versions of the film on the two discs, all visually beautiful. If you’re a fan of the Halloween holiday at all I would say to definitely check this out. I will be giving it another chance before the season is done.