‘Late night with the Devil’ review – this 70s style paranormal horror falls flat and I’m baffled by the positive reviews

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There’s a lot to admire about ‘Late Night with the Devil’ – this horror movie is packed with great performances from the likes of David Dastmalchian, who proves that he is much more than a strange-looking guy who can only play side characters. The movie is supposed to make you feel like you’re watching an American TV chat show from the 70s, and it definitely achieves that – I watched this movie at a small, independent cinema in a screen that only had 15 seats, but I’d imagine that in some ways the movie would have been even more effective if I’d watched it at home on my TV.

What the film doesn’t manage to achieve is anything remotely scary, and I don’t think this is just a personal matter either. Although there were only 14 other people in my screen, I didn’t sense that anyone was particularly disturbed by what was being shown on screen. In fact, some of the scenes that were definitely supposed to be scary actually elicited laughter from parts of the crowd.
I really wanted to enjoy this movie, and expected to enjoy it based on the very strong Rotten Tomatoes score. But, and I can honestly say this, I found this movie very forgettable and not scary or disturbing in the slightest. And it’s not just that I’m a bore either – I wrote about how much I enjoyed the recent horror hit ‘Immaculate’, which is far from perfect, but I was able to see beyond its imperfections and left the screen feeling genuinely disturbed and shook by what I’d seen. And I wasn’t the only one either – most of the audience seemed to sit in silence for a few moments before quietly shuffling out of the screen.
So let me be clear ‘Late Night with the Devil’ is not a bad movie, it’s just not scary. And in my opinion, an unscary movie listed as a ‘Horror’ should not be sitting with a 97% critic rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

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