Llanelli Star - - FILM REVIEWS -

★★★ ★★

ALL’S fair in love and the war for TV rat­ings in Nisha Gana­tra’s spiky com­edy.

For al­most 30 years, Katherine New­bury (Dame Emma Thomp­son) has presided over an award­win­ning talk show that has tried to take the higher cul­tural ground.

Un­for­tu­nately, rat­ings have plum­meted and network pres­i­dent Caroline Mor­ton (Amy Ryan) de­cides to re­place Katherine with edgy stand-up co­me­dian Daniel Ten­nant (Ike Bar­in­holtz).

Faced with the re­al­ity of re­lin­quish­ing her crown at the end of the cur­rent sea­son, Katherine vows to re­verse the show’s for­tunes.

“There aren’t any women on the staff be­cause you hate women,” ob­serves pro­ducer Brad (De­nis O’Hare) so Katherine or­ders him to ad­dress the im­bal­ance.

Molly Pa­tel (Mindy Kal­ing), an ef­fi­ciency ex­pert at a Penn­syl­va­nia chem­i­cal plant, with no writ­ing ex­pe­ri­ence be­yond her own stand-up ma­te­rial, is in the right place at the right time.

She joins an all-white male writ­ers’ room led by Tom Camp­bell (Reid Scott), who pens Katherine’s open­ing mono­logue.

Fel­low writ­ers dis­miss Molly as a to­ken hire but col­league Char­lie Fain (Hugh Dancy) is more open-minded.

Molly en­cour­ages Katherine to mine per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ence to re­con­fig­ure the pub­lic’s per­cep­tion.

Late Night is a sparkling show­case for an en­sem­ble cast led by the lu­mi­nous Thomp­son and Kal­ing.

Dame Emma Thomp­son

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