top of page

Late Night with the Devil (2023) Review - Navigating 70s Pop Culture with Gen Z

Late Night with the Devil is a masterfully crafted horror thriller that takes audiences on a chilling journey into the dark corners of late-night television in the late 1970s. Written and directed by Colin and Cameron Cairnes, the film is set against the backdrop of October 31, 1977, bringing a nostalgic yet haunting vibe to the screen.

David Dastmalchian delivers a riveting performance as Jack Delroy, the beleaguered talk show host whose desperation to revive his show's ratings leads him down a terrifying path. Dastmalchian captures Jack's grief and determination with nuanced precision, making his descent into chaos both compelling and heart-wrenching.

The supporting cast, including Laura Gordon, Ian Bliss, Ingrid Torelli, Rhys Auteri, and Georgina Haig, adds depth and intensity to the narrative. Each character contributes to the mounting tension, making the audience feel as if they are part of the live studio audience witnessing the horror unfold in real time. Torelli's turn as Lilly, the young girl who is allegedly possessed by a demon, adds a terrifying layer of intrigue that only adds to the unknown of it all.

The Cairnes brothers have created an atmospheric and suspenseful film, with impeccable attention to period detail that immerses viewers in the late 70s setting. The Halloween special setup is ingeniously used to build suspense, with every moment of Jack's show escalating towards the ultimate horror. As a special touch, the Cairnes tackle the topic of cults and demonic influence over America's youth in a way that perfectly captures the feelings of the era. Politicians and the media of the 70s and 80s utilized these topics to great entertaining effect, while also scaring the crap out of small town populations. At least that's what I witnessed in my small hometown in northeast Ohio.

Late Night with the Devil excels in blending psychological terror with supernatural elements, keeping audiences guessing about the true nature of the evil unleashed. The film's pacing is superb, slowly unraveling the mystery while maintaining a constant sense of dread. The backstory for Jack with his wife's passing and his membership in a gentleman's only secret society add to the intrigue and keeps us guessing at to what is real and what is a hallucination.

Overall, Late Night with the Devil is a standout entry in the horror genre, combining excellent performances, a gripping story, and masterful direction. It's a must-watch for fans of psychological horror and supernatural thrillers, offering a unique and terrifying viewing experience that will linger long after the credits roll.

Click here to see the trailer:


bottom of page