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‘Late Night’ – Review

‘Late Night’ – Review

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If you’re looking for some light-hearted fun and some out there laughs then you should check out Late Night starring Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling.

When late night talk show host Katherine Newbury (Emma Thompson) suspects that she may soon lose her long-running show, she calls upon newbie writer Molly Patel (Mindy Kaling) to help punch up her act.

Taking the lead in Late Night is versatile performer and English national treasure Emma Thompson as talk-show host Katherine Newbury. Once one of the most cutting edge personalities of her time Newbury’s ratings have hit an all-time low and she’s on the verge of being cancelled. As Newbury, Thompson perfectly captures the take-no-prisoners attitude of this total career woman who isn’t in control of her life as much as she likes to think that she is. While Thompson is perfectly stern and sharp when she needs to be, she also opens herself up to portraying a deep-hearted sense of vulnerability as her life starts to implode around her. Thompson gives a very honest performance here, but don’t worry her comedy is also top notch as well and she certainly doesn’t mind speaking her mind which leads to plenty of laughs.

Joining Thompson is the always dependable Mindy Kaling and she brings a different side of herself to the screen here. As an all-around ordinary nobody named Molly Patel, Kaling is a complete fish out of water as she tries to find a way into the entertainment industry and in doing so becomes an unexpected pupil and protegee for Thompson’s Newbury. Having to learn on her feet, Molly soon becomes the top class comedy writer on staff and her genius for the unexpected leads to plenty of laughs . Kaling really riffs well with Thompson and their on-screen relationship, although not traditional in any sense of the word, leads to plenty of interesting moments and the two actresses complement each other well.

For audiences wanting a good laugh, well, Late Night certainly has plenty of them on display, and this comedy comes at you at the most unexpected moments. The film’s subject matter of comedy itself leads the way for plenty of absurdity, and it’s funny to watch the mounting internal battles of Catherine Newbury’s in-house writing time as they all jostle for position and power to be the funniest. One part of Late Night that was funny to watch from a comedic standpoint was the use of situational comedy from Thompson and Kaling and how they used this to drive the film’s narrative. There were plenty of hilarious situations, but if I had to choose a standout it then it would definitely be Molly’s job interview. That got me going.

Late Night also makes for an extremely layered watch as it takes audiences behind the scenes of the reality of what a late night show really is. It pulls back the curtain and offers the audience a front-row seat into what makes the world’s leading late night shows so entertaining. This focus in on how these shows work leads to plenty of room for great social satire, both within the fictitious late night show itself and at it at the same time. It’s clear that Kaling has drawn upon her own career, which included a stint as a writer for Conan and this real-life history only adds to the enjoyment of Late Night.

If you’re looking for some fun laughs, and a couple of really interesting performances, then you definitely should not pass on Late Night because this one delivers the goods.

Image: Roadshow Films