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155 of 166 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ALWAYS READ EVERYONE'S REVIEW...
You know, that old saying, "Opinions, is like...(You know), everyone has one? I suppose, that can also apply to movie reviews, too. I read the review, that someone sent in, on the 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition of, IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT. It was very enlightening, but there was something about it, that just didn't make sense. That person indicated in their review,...
Published on February 4, 2008 by THE ATHLETIC STUD

versus
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Birth of the Seventies Police Detective Flick!
This film clearly inspired the kind of distinctive 70's era police detective films to come such as "Shaft" and "Dirty Harry" and even the great score by Quincy Jones evokes memories of the similar sounding ones connected with those two films. As a detective mystery, this film does a very good job in addition to being a social statement for viewers in the late 60's...
Published on June 9, 2008 by Frederick Baptist


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155 of 166 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ALWAYS READ EVERYONE'S REVIEW..., February 4, 2008
By 
THE ATHLETIC STUD (SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA) - See all my reviews
You know, that old saying, "Opinions, is like...(You know), everyone has one? I suppose, that can also apply to movie reviews, too. I read the review, that someone sent in, on the 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition of, IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT. It was very enlightening, but there was something about it, that just didn't make sense. That person indicated in their review, that there wasn't anything different in the 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition DVD, of IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, which was released a few weeks ago, from the original DVD version, which was released, in 2005. When I read that person's review, I said to myself, "Well, there's no sense buying it again, just for the movie alone". Then, it occurred to me. Why would the studios release a great movie, like this one, on DVD...call it, "The 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition"...and not have any special features, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the film? According to the review, of that person, and unfortunately, according the lack of special features info, on the Amazon page, I believed that person, and Amazon...Until the other night, when I saw the "The 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition" DVD of IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, in the store. I flipped the cover around only to find out that there're not 1...not 2, but 3 featurettes:
1) TURNING UP THE HEAT: MOVIE-MAKING IN THE 1960'S
2) THE SLAP HEARD AROUND THE WORLD
3) QUNICY JONES: BREAKING NEW SOUND...(Which is worth buying the DVD for)
So, I bought it. I suppose, the point of all of this is. Actually, there're two points:
Don't go by only one's opinion or one's review, and the most important point: Amazon, you have a great web page, and we all know that you're trying to cut costs, but remember: You're trying to save, but in long run, you'll be losing...losing money and customers.
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58 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two Great Actors in a Great Movie, May 19, 2002
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Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger almost set the screen afire in this film that deservedly won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1967. Superbly directed by Norman Jewison, the movie brings us into deepest Mississippi one summer midnight, when a northern industrialist with plans to build a new factory is found murdered in the middle of Sparta's main street. At the same time, Virgil Tibbs, a black detective from Los Angeles, is waiting at the station for the train that will take him back home from visiting his mother.

This being Mississippi, and a black man out after dark, it must have been the black man who committed the murder, right? Tibbs is hauled into the sheriff's office and brought face to face with Bill Gillespie, the epitome of every redneck law officer south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Gillespie's reaction to Tibbs is first contempt (this is a black man after all), suspicion at his full wallet ("Boy, that's more in a week than I make in a month, now where did you earn that?"), and finally shock, when Tibbs hurls the response into his face, "I'm a police officer."

Gillespie is further stunned to realize that Tibbs' contempt for him is at least as great as his for Tibbs, when he hears Tibbs telling his superiors over the phone "They got a murder on their hands, they don't know what to do with it." Tibbs' boss volunteers Tibbs's services as a homicide expert to Gillespie, who doesn't particularly want to accept, but he doesn't have much of a choice; the industrialist's widow says if her husband's murder isn't solved and fast, there won't be any factory anywhere. The resulting reluctant partnership between the two men is a pairing unlike any seen on screen; they resent each other but they can't solve the crime without each other; Gillespie needs Tibbs' expertise, and Tibbs needs Gillespie's protection from the local rednecks who want him dead.

The movie wonderfully evokes the atmosphere of a small town in the deep south, the abject poverty in which most of the blacks in the area lived, and the attitudes of the whites in town that made it dangerous for any black man to stand tall as a man. At the movie's end, Gillespie hasn't changed his views about blacks, but he has come to respect Tibbs as a lawman and as a human being; and Tibbs comes to realize that inside of Gillespie's hardshell racist attitudes is a decent man struggling to get out. The acting, the directing, and above all, Quincy Jones's magnificent score, made this one of the best movies of the 1960's and for years beyond.

Judy Lind
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39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I may be biased but....., March 25, 2008
By 
W. T. Waldron ""I am the Artman"" (Sparta, Illinois United States) - See all my reviews
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I live in Sparta Illinois where the movie was filmed in the fall of 1966. It took several viewings back in 1967 before I could get past the "I know whose house that is," and " Why did Stieger drive all the way around the block to get to the Mayor's place?"
Anyway, I wanted to add that the sound quality on this release is excellent. You can hear the rocks popping off of the police car's tires as Warren Oates slowly drives away from the diner. I also found the extras to be most interesting. The one on Quincy Jones and the soundtrack was very informative.
To fans of the film and its companions in the 1967 Oscar race I would also recomend "Pictures at A Revolution: Five movies and the Birth of the new Hollywood" by Mark Harris.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cast, storytelling turns on Heat, January 15, 2001
By 
Don Eldredge "Old Man" (Sherman, TX United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: In the Heat of the Night (DVD)
"In the Heat of the Night" excels not only because of the story but also because of a composite cast that works so well. The acting is sometimes over the top (as the director admits during the DVD commentary), but such shenanigans fit in this type of film. Multiple viewings help in the understanding of how detective Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier) unravels the mystery of who killed the rich Northerner in a Southern town. Though somewhat dated because of the racist subject, it still holds together as a who-done-it and deserved better recognition from the American Film Institute when that group named its 100 best films of the century. Among that Top 100 was another 1967 Poitier film, "Guess Who's Coming To Dinner," which does not hold up well today. And for the record, Poitier was likely overlooked by the Academy Awards here because he starred in three box office bonanzas in '67, the third being "To Sir With Love." Instead, the Oscar went to 'Heat of the Night' co-star Rod Steiger. As for the DVD, there are some visible scratches in the film, and there is only a commentary track with no other extras. A "making of" documentary would have been nice, but the four-person commentary (director Norman Jewison, cinematographer Haskell Wexler and actors Lee Grant and Steiger) serves well. This one is worth owning for the low price attached, although the video transfer and packaging could have been handled with more repect. It deserves it.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Original Was Great - The Re-Mastered Blu Ray Is Fantastic, January 14, 2014
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Having seen the original release in the movie house, and owning the VHS and DVD, I can tell you the re-master is GREAT! Others have written of the outstanding production this was as well as the superb acting. Add to that an almost flawless re-master - and you have a great 110 minutes of a classic film.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THEY CALL ME MR TIBBS!, February 25, 2002
By 
Buddha's Ghost (Western Washington) - See all my reviews
This review is from: In the Heat of the Night (DVD)
I lost track of how many times I've watched this movie over the years and yet, I still find it stimulating to my system. Taking place in the redneck driven byways in the Mississippi of the 1960's, not only does it make a sweeping social statement on racial bias and ignorance, but it's also one entertaining vision of cinema. Sidney Poitier is masterful as Virgil Tibbs, a "colored" homicide detective from Philadelphia, in the wrong place at the right time as a sleepy little river town comes to grips with the death of a big business man who was to be the holy grail of local commerce until his untimely death. It is Rod Steiger, however who burns brightest as a midlife police chief with no family and a metric ton of issues which he vents through misplaced anger and cools at night in a bottle of bourbon as he attempts to bring the murder case to resolution as quickly as possible, regardless of the truth."No pity. No thank YOU!" One of my all time favorites.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film, April 30, 2003
By 
Eric V. Moye (New York, by way of Dallas) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: In the Heat of the Night (DVD)
One of the decade's best Oscar winning films (but lamentably, not for its true star, Sidney Poitier). those who only know the television series which is tepid by comparison have really missed out. It is a marvelous study in race relations, driven by two of the best performances ever by Sidney Poitier (portraying a Philadelphia homicide detective called a "powerful piece of po-lice manpower by Rod Steiger, as the redneck sheriff of a small Mississippi town). They are thrust together when confronted with the murder of the most influential man in town.
For some, the confronting of race in this film does not seem as dated as another reviewer suggests. It is fascinating to see Poitier, one of the only African American stars of the time play a role here in such contrast to his roles as a most polite, non threatening Negro in "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and "To Sir, With Love". We can tell this is a different kind of man, from the first time he confronts the Sheriff. When asked if he will be the cause of any trouble, his response "no trouble at all" is delivered with quiet but chilling self- assuredness that lets everyone know that even in the Sheriff's office, HE is the one in control.
There is one interesting change of the original script. Legend has it that the script originally called for Poitier's character to stoically accept a slap in the face from an old Southerner he's questioning admirably portrayed by William Schallert). Poitier opined that it would be a much more powerful scene in instead of turning the other cheek, he returned the same slap. He did, and made it one of the more powerful moments in the film.
Great quotable movie line, exclaimed by Rod Steiger: "I got the motive which is money and the body which is dead!" Super supporting cast, including the aforementioned Schallert, Warren Oates, Scott Wilson, and Lee Grant. Its great right down to the title song, sung with more soul than can be contained in any one man - save Ray Charles.
A movie to be seen time and time again, and certainly one for the library.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "They call me Mr. Tibbs!", April 7, 2006
This review is from: In the Heat of the Night (DVD)
I remember growing up watching the television series "In the Heat of the Night" with my parents before bed every night, but I saw this film for the first time last night, and when I heard Ray Charles singing the theme song I was flooded with good memories. Now I have to say, this film is damn near perfect. It has all the elements for a great film, from a riviting storyline, great acting and interesting charactors. Sidney Poitier plays Virgil Tibbs, an African-American cop who's falsly arrested for the murder of a rich white man. Virgil was visiting his mother in a small Mississippi town of Sparta when the bigot sherrif accuses him of murder. After revieling his identity his services are offered since he works homicide and may be able to help solve the murder. From that point on we watch as the town fights to kick Virgil out, and we see Sherrif Bill Gillespie (played by Rod Steiger in his Oscar winning role) learn to accept Virgil. Theres a scene where Virgil and Bill are drinking and talking in Bill's home and Bill is talking about how he has no one, no kids, no wife, no friends, and you start to see him as the man he is and not the bigot he was. This is far more than just a movie about murder, it's a movie about acceptance and change and how one town, brought up with one way of thinking can change that way when they realize their faults. It's great to see how Virgil goes from the outcast to the respected partner. Sidney and Rod are great together here, as is Lee Grant as the widow, who in her two short scenes shows enough feeling and emotion to earn her a Golden Globe nod...and the scene where she learns of her husbands misfortune is acting at it's greatest. Brilliant movie!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superbly Portrayed Mid-Sixties Prejudice, May 17, 2003
By 
J. Magin (Ellicott City, MD United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: In the Heat of the Night (DVD)
This milestone 1967 racial commentary spawned two sequels and a long-running TV show, and won that year's Best Picture Oscar.
Sidney Poitier plays Virgil Tibbs, a Philadelphia homicide expert visiting family in Sparta, Mississippi. When a Northern industrialist is found dead, Tibbs is immediately arrested to confront Police Chief Bill Gillespie (Best Actor Oscar-winner Rod Steiger), who, after learning Tibbs' credentials and calling his chief, must grudgingly accept Tibbs' help in solving the murder.
Steiger's performance as the dedicated chief is brilliant ("I am familiar with the laws in the state of Mississippi, thank YOU!), as he somewhat breaks the film stereotype of Southern sheriffs. However, Warren Oates' superb portrayal of Deputy Sam Wood reinforces those stereotypes; so much so that the disgusted widow (Lee Grant) asks, "What kind of place is this? Who are you people."
What follows is the pair's struggle to work together despite tremendous opposition from the town. In one memorable scene, Tibbs exchanges slaps in the face with the white owner of Endicott Cotton, who compares his fragile plants to "the Negro," in that they "need special care." Endicott is Sparta's most influential businessman who'd least appreciate an influx of Afro-American labor.
As Tibbs brilliantly eliminates suspects, backtracks, and continually re-evaluates evidence, his time is running short as his sophisticated detective efforts begin to pay off.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poitier Deserved an Oscar, May 28, 2000
Yes, Rod Steiger won for his blistering portrayal of Chief Gillespie, but the award for Best Actor should have been shared with Sidney Poitier. Both men are superb as they "play off" each other in this intriguing social commentary.
Also, Warren Oates is memorable as a dim-witted deputy. He was one character actor who excelled in every role given him.
The "Heat" is a scorcher!
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In The Heat Of The Night
In The Heat Of The Night by Norman Jewison
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