Late Night with the Devil Movie Review

Late Night with the Devil movie poster

If you suffer from FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), then you better watch the buzzy cult horror movie Late Night with the Devil. Pronto. If you suffer from FOWR (Fear of Wasting Time), then for God’s sake trust your gut instinct.

The new horror flick from writing-directing duo Cameron and Colin Cairnes gives longtime character actor David Dastmalchian a rare headline opportunity, but D-Malk as I like to call him isn’t given much to do as he finds himself at the mercy of cheesy retro filmmaking and storytelling. He may play the host of the Johnny Carson-esque show at the center of Late Night with the Devil, but he’s still not the main attraction.

In the mercilessly short 90-minute film, we watch “lost footage” recordings of a late night TV show from 1977 in which a Halloween episode goes awry thanks to the presence of a teenage girl who may or may not be possessed by Satan himself.

It’s a cool concept–a second-rate host desperately wants to make it big, and reaches a point where he’ll stop at nothing to succeed–but that’s where the cool-factor ends. The retro vibes extend beyond the look and feel–Late Night with the Devil suffers from innate cheesiness, flat acting, silly visual effects, and forgettable horror cliches. The possession stuff is about as generic as possible, the rest even worse. The movie feels less retro than it does an amateur movie that someone locked away in a vault for nearly 50 years.

As for D-Malk, he’s fine, but he truly comes off as a wide-eyed wallflower than someone who actually contributes to the success (or in this case, failure) of the production. He has great talent, but Late Night with the Devil fails to tap into it.

Instantly forgettable and ultimately late, Late Night with the Devil needed more sacrifices to be worthwhile. The only scary thing at play: it truly is a waste of time.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.

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