Review: Late Night


Dream big.

Katherine Newbury (Emma Thompson) is a long running late night talk show host whose ratings have been declining. When she's accused of hating women by her colleague, Brad (Denis O'Hare) she immediately orders him to hire a woman. Enter Molly Patel (Mindy Kaling) an essay winner with no comedy experience who happens to be in the right place in the right time, and now she's the only non white male on Katherine's writing staff. 

I've been looking forward to this since it was announced at Sundance, but when the first trailer came out I put the brakes on my hype a little because it was kind of awful. I'm happy to say that the trailer did not do this film justice at all. 

Mindy Kaling is a great writer and even though the script plays it pretty safe, I love what she did here. There's plenty of laughs and the characters were easy to warm up to. Molly is instantly likable and Katherine is fairly complex. The privilege drenched writing staff, lead by Reid Scott, Max Casella, and Paul Walter Hauser among others are all very amusing themselves and are responsible for some really great jokes. They're a bit typecast, but it works.

The star is Emma Thompson. I assumed it would be Molly that carries the story but it really is Katherine. We see glimpses of who she was before she stopped caring about the quality of her show and we feel her desperation at not wanting to let go. It's a great performance.

As I said, the script does play it really safe but it makes for a fun matinee. You'll certainly enjoy yourselves.

Recommended: Yes

Grade: B

Memorable Quote: "I like it. The glitter, the ponies. Are you super excited about getting your first period?" 

12 comments:

  1. I'm so glad the movie is better than the trailer, I love the idea of this movie but that trailer didn't do it for me at all. Sadly my local is only showing this in the day-time so I'm going to miss it, but I hope it comes to Netflix or similar soon!

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    1. I hate when that happens. My indie theater always has the worst show times.

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  2. I do want to see this because I like Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling.

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  3. The trailer doesn't look all that good but it stars The wonderful Emma Thompson so I figure it was better than I saw on TV. Glad to hear it is funny and has some depth

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    1. Yeah the trailer does zero justice. It's far better than it lets on.

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  4. Ufff those trailers were bad! Studios are puzzled why comedies are flopping but this, long shot and Booksmart all had tragique trailers

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    1. You would think cutting a comedy trailer would be easy too.

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  5. I agree it was a little safe, for example I felt it was a little soft on the guys who only respected her after she had to prove herself. It seems to be a redemptive arc for them. Still, enjoyed the film.

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    1. I agree there. Reid Scott's character towards the end reminded me a lot of BJ Novak, I'm guessing Mindy based part of his personality on him.

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  6. Like 'Little Woods' I think I'll add this one to my list too Brittani =] Sounds intriguing, especially with all this 'metoo' stuff hanging around

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