Movie review: Late Night

29 Jul 2019 / 11:08 H.

THIS comedy relies mostly on subtle humour to get its message across. While it may not be everyone’s cup of tea (Malaysians in general love slapstick), it does offer an interesting insight into the world of television, especially on women as well as minorities.

Both Thompson and Kaling essentially carry this film and it is their likeability that helps you relate to the characters.

The film follows Katherine Newbury (Thompson), who has hosted the Tonight with Katherine Newbury show for over two decades.

Due to falling ratings, and to add some diversity to her writing staff, Katherine agrees to hire a female minority writer.

That is how shy, insecure Molly (Kaling), a former supervisor in a chemical factory, gets the job despite not having any television background.

Molly is a huge fan of Katherine’s show and a budding stand-up comedian. Fitting into Katherine’s all-white male writing staff is difficult, but Molly’s biggest problem is Katherine herself.

Throughout the movie, we see Katherine as this formidable person who barely acknowledges her staff, and bristles at the notion that she is the one who needs to change.

The only time we see any real warmth for Katherine is through her interactions with her invalid husband (Lithgow), who is the only person who can tell her the truth to her face.

As Molly helps her boss re-invent herself, Katherine is pressured to pass the mantle to another comedian.

When Katherine refuses, a story of a past indiscretion is leaked to the media.

Kaling and Thompson are the main reasons to watch this movie. Thompson makes the abrasive Katherine actually likeable, while Kaling is equally engaging as the insecure Molly who is determined to come out of her shell.

Do take note, Late Night is only being screened in selected GSC cinemas.

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