Emma Thompson plays late night TV host Katherine Newbury in this upcoming new movie. She is a cold, rather unemotional character who has a lack of respect for her staff. Her show and her career are declining in the modern world and she’s in need of fresh ideas.
Enter Chemical plant worker Molly Patel, played by Mindy Kaling. She’s got virtually no experience but has a tonne of ideas to liven up things up. Her appointment does not exactly sit too well with the all white, all male team of writers and we begin to see a clash of personalities. Molly’s bluntness also creates a sort of rift between the writers and Newbury herself.
Late Night addresses some important themes such as gender and racial inequality in the workplace. It manages to create a humour around these issues without making light of them. This is a pretty difficult task and Nisha Ganatra deserves credit for her directing in this regard, as does Mindy Kaling for her writing. It’s certainly not the only film to champion femininity but it does so in a way where you don’t feel that it is it’s sole purpose.
The film is, however, rather predictable and the supporting characters are not the most realistic. The dialogue can sometimes feel a bit forced and unnatural. The group of male writers don’t seem terribly important and are there really to represent masculinity more than anything else. Saying that, the two main character, Molly and Katherine are strong, driven women and they are the main drivers of the film.
Late Night may not be the most subtle film but it does challenge important issues and there is also enough about the plot and characters to make it an enjoyable experience.