Late Night With The Devil

Release Date - 22nd March, Cert - 15, Run-time - 1 hour 33 minutes, Directors - Cameron Cairnes, Colin Cairnes

With his talk show failing in the ratings Jack Delroy (David Dastmalchian) puts on a live edition meddling with the occult

Late Night With The Devil's biggest success is its attention to detail. It feels authentic to the golden age of TV talk shows. The set, the conversations, and the wisecracks as things start to break down all feel like they're from a show struggling to compete with Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show. Hoping to boost his ratings to avoid getting axed is Night Owls host Jack Delroy (David Dastmalchian), in order to do so he arranges for a live broadcast with guests including mystics, hypnotists and those who have dealt with possession.

After a documentary-style opening delving into the current state of late night talk the footage we see is supposedly unedited from the broadcast, with occasional never-before-seen behind-the-scenes moments which break from the box-like aspect ratio which adds further believability to the proceedings. Bringing out the humour and tension as things start to go wrong with the live broadcast. Even professional debunker Carmichael Hunt (Ian Bliss) begins to struggle to make convincing rational explanations as the dealings with the occult begin to haunt the studio.

With each new guest, particularly a young girl (Ingrid Torelli) living with a demon inside her - one which perhaps knows details of the host's tragic past - the creepiness enhances. Pushed by the overall detail and specificity of the small-scale production questions begin to fly around as to whether this is all planned (à la Ghostwatch) or something much more sinister is unfolding in real time. Despite warnings from his crew Dastmalchian - mastering the radio-to-TV voice in a brilliant leading performance - snaps back at them breaking from his squeaky clean and charming professionality.

As things start to fly (quite literally) around the studio the entertainment and thrill factor grows. The tone is set from the opening stages which open up 90 minutes with natural laughs and growing eeriness. Helmed by a central performance which is superglued to its authentic surroundings, the quasi-mockumentary style grins with the audience preparing for what's to come.

The rises, falls and general developments throughout are seamless within the lens and context of the film. Never growing too grand while not selling itself short the aims are clear while still going to unexpected, and effective, places; all whilst continuing the questions as to whether everything we're seeing is just a trick put on by the Night Owls production team or not. All blurring together to create a highly entertaining ride with plenty of thrills and chills bounced off of the natural feeling of a 70s talk show. Amusement and tension are built up in equal measure for full effect in the whirling finale. Late Night With The Devil flies by, and at times towards you, and I can't wait to experience it again!

Jamie Skinner, Five stars