In the Heat of the Night Reviews

  • 5d ago

    The mystery could have unfolded in a more clever way but the acting is top knotch and worth the viewing

    The mystery could have unfolded in a more clever way but the acting is top knotch and worth the viewing

  • 6d ago

    Movie doesn't hold up well over time.

    Movie doesn't hold up well over time.

  • 6d ago

    It's an invaluable gem. People should watch Portier movies. Fortunately they cast great people around him like Steiger who could help illuminate prejudice without caricature. But it's Portier's weight of performance that makes his movies memorable and significant.

    It's an invaluable gem. People should watch Portier movies. Fortunately they cast great people around him like Steiger who could help illuminate prejudice without caricature. But it's Portier's weight of performance that makes his movies memorable and significant.

  • Jan 01, 2021

    What is a film good for, if it does not tell a story, if its characters do not evolve and transform, and above all, if it does not leave a lasting impression, enough to make us challenge our very own version of prejudice?

    What is a film good for, if it does not tell a story, if its characters do not evolve and transform, and above all, if it does not leave a lasting impression, enough to make us challenge our very own version of prejudice?

  • Nov 03, 2020

    A brilliant film with superb acting from Poitier and Steiger. Also, one of the most iconic moments in cinema. This is a must see.

    A brilliant film with superb acting from Poitier and Steiger. Also, one of the most iconic moments in cinema. This is a must see.

  • Oct 24, 2020

    A masterpiece of a crime drama/mystery, wrapped inside a story of Southern American racism with more than a hint of a Western in its framing that in turn alludes occasionally to Greek myths and legends (think the central character's name, the name of the town it all takes place in). Never less than gripping, the quiet power of Poitier's performance is a thing of wonder; that he was unrecognised at awards for it I would like to be able to put down to a lack of showiness in his work, but it's much more likely to be a result of the cruel irony of a structurally racist industry failing to reward an African American actor for his work in a film which highlights racism.

    A masterpiece of a crime drama/mystery, wrapped inside a story of Southern American racism with more than a hint of a Western in its framing that in turn alludes occasionally to Greek myths and legends (think the central character's name, the name of the town it all takes place in). Never less than gripping, the quiet power of Poitier's performance is a thing of wonder; that he was unrecognised at awards for it I would like to be able to put down to a lack of showiness in his work, but it's much more likely to be a result of the cruel irony of a structurally racist industry failing to reward an African American actor for his work in a film which highlights racism.

  • Oct 20, 2020

    Sidney Poitier ... icon.

    Sidney Poitier ... icon.

  • Oct 08, 2020

    Absolute masterpiece acting from the two main leads. Sidney Poitier in deep south Mississippi in the 60's, so the racism is in full force here. A murder mystery, with a black detective from Philly and a white Southern small town sheriff working together reluctantly. "They call me Mr. Tibbs!" Must watch classic.

    Absolute masterpiece acting from the two main leads. Sidney Poitier in deep south Mississippi in the 60's, so the racism is in full force here. A murder mystery, with a black detective from Philly and a white Southern small town sheriff working together reluctantly. "They call me Mr. Tibbs!" Must watch classic.

  • Sep 30, 2020

    As far as mystery/murder movies goes, this is fairly weak. However, that was not the main purpose of this movie. As an approachable look into the systematic racism that existed in the deep south at the time of this movie, and how racism can express itself in some surprising ways, this movie does its job. This is one of those movies that not only survives through the passage of time, but thrives. It is as relevant today as the day it was first screened.

    As far as mystery/murder movies goes, this is fairly weak. However, that was not the main purpose of this movie. As an approachable look into the systematic racism that existed in the deep south at the time of this movie, and how racism can express itself in some surprising ways, this movie does its job. This is one of those movies that not only survives through the passage of time, but thrives. It is as relevant today as the day it was first screened.

  • Sep 01, 2020

    Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier) — remember the name — is a black homicide detective from Philly who unfortunately finds himself in a one-horse town in rural Mississippi… in the 1960s… The overt racism begins with him being arrested for the murder of a white man because he's black — your standard redneck racism (rebel yells from cars with confederate flag plates popping into his bumper to run him off the road, not being served in a diner, not wanted in the same room, etc. etc.) and for some reason, Virgil argues with police chief Gillespie (Rod Steiger, who won an Oscar for his performance) to stay in the town to help solve the murder. The dead man is a businessman who was setting up a factory in the small town and may have made a few enemies. Or, maybe he was the victim of a senseless crime?! Honestly, it doesn't really matter because the crime and its resolution aren't very interesting. Instead, In the Heat of the Night merits a view for the acting — the scene with Virgil, Gillespie, Purdy (James Patterson) and Delores (Quentin Dean), is phenomenal — the thrills of watching Virgil escape the roving rednecks, and the friendship forged between the Philadelphian and the Mississippi police chief. I mean, the film did win Best Picture at the 40th Academy Awards, although, The Graduate is definitely the better film. Also, Poitier gets to slap a racist white man… in Mississippi… in the 1960s, which was yuge — the slap-back heard round the world. And, of course, can't leave out the famous "They call me Mister Tibbs!" ranked 16th on AFI's 100 Years…100 Movie Quotes list.

    Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier) — remember the name — is a black homicide detective from Philly who unfortunately finds himself in a one-horse town in rural Mississippi… in the 1960s… The overt racism begins with him being arrested for the murder of a white man because he's black — your standard redneck racism (rebel yells from cars with confederate flag plates popping into his bumper to run him off the road, not being served in a diner, not wanted in the same room, etc. etc.) and for some reason, Virgil argues with police chief Gillespie (Rod Steiger, who won an Oscar for his performance) to stay in the town to help solve the murder. The dead man is a businessman who was setting up a factory in the small town and may have made a few enemies. Or, maybe he was the victim of a senseless crime?! Honestly, it doesn't really matter because the crime and its resolution aren't very interesting. Instead, In the Heat of the Night merits a view for the acting — the scene with Virgil, Gillespie, Purdy (James Patterson) and Delores (Quentin Dean), is phenomenal — the thrills of watching Virgil escape the roving rednecks, and the friendship forged between the Philadelphian and the Mississippi police chief. I mean, the film did win Best Picture at the 40th Academy Awards, although, The Graduate is definitely the better film. Also, Poitier gets to slap a racist white man… in Mississippi… in the 1960s, which was yuge — the slap-back heard round the world. And, of course, can't leave out the famous "They call me Mister Tibbs!" ranked 16th on AFI's 100 Years…100 Movie Quotes list.