A nuclear alarm is set off in a secluded provincial school, lights that flashed different colors corresponding to various disasters. In this case the flashing light is yellow, meaning a nuclear attack is imminent. After much panicked discussion, the principal decides to take the alarm seriously, calling an assembly and ordering the teachers to walk their students home.
These walks take the form of nightmarish treks over miles of country roads, with the children following the teachers in groups of fifteen or so. We follow one such group, as the teacher grows increasingly exhausted in her high heels and the children succumb to panic. We also look in on the children as they return home: one of them hides under her bed after her parents refuse to believe her frantic warnings of an impending attack. Another locks himself in his basement with his schizophrenic grandmother. Most memorable are a group of children who hide out in a bomb shelter owned by the parents of a callous adolescent girl, who runs the place with an iron fist, leading to a disturbing Lord of The Flies-type situation. One of Ladybug Ladybug’s most effective aspects is its lazy country setting. Frank Perry, in direct contrast to the type of hysteria one would expect, utilizes deliberate pacing and a disconcertingly quiet atmosphere to enhance the aura of mounting fear. The very stillness of the well-chosen, mostly outdoor locations only adds to the general disquietude.
Frank J. Perry, Jr. (August 21, 1930 – August 29, 1995) was an American stage and film director, producer and screenwriter. Frank was married to author and screenwriter Eleanor Perry (1960–1971), Barbara Goldsmith and Virginia Brush Ford.
Perry was born in New York City, of Portuguese and German ancestry, the son of Pauline (née Schwab), who worked at Alcoholics Anonymous, and Frank J. Perry, a stockbroker. His mother was a niece of Charles M. Schwab, who founded the Bethlehem Steel Corporation. As a teenager, Perry began pursuing his interest in the theater with a job as a parking lot attendant for the Westport Country Playhouse in nearby Westport, Connecticut. He attended the University of Miami. He produced several plays at Westport and then turned for a time to producing television documentaries.
A veteran of the Korean War, he returned to the entertainment industry after being discharged and made his directorial debut in 1962 with the low-budget drama film David and… read more