Late Night with the Devil (2024)

Directed by Cameron Cairnes and Colin Cairnes

A live broadcast of a late-night talk show in 1977 goes horribly wrong, unleashing evil into the nation’s living rooms.

If The Exorcist took place in New York instead of Washington, D.C., of course the first thing they would think of is to put little Regan on TV for the fame.

Still, as someone who never grew up with the kinds of late-night TV talk shows being satirised here, a lot of the inherent satirical and iconoclasm of this felt more than a little hollow — perhaps in something of the same way that those in the US will always miss the ambient provincial humour in Alan Partridge. (Did anyone in the cinema know what 'Sweeps Week' is?)

It's hard to avoid the conclusion that this is mostly a worthy high-concept gambit that ultimately falls short of, rather than wideof, the mark. It would be a little unfair to compare this film to titans such as Network (1976) or The King of Comedy (1982), but Late Night with the Devil has very little to say on just how far media personalities push things in their quest for ratings, celebrity and our role as spectators in perpetuating this culture, and thus a chance to update the critique for the hyper-mediated age of social media (and a world in which Alex Jones is somehow still on the air) was squandered in favour of, I dunno, having a little girl talk in a weird voice.