8.0/10
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193 user 93 critic

In the Heat of the Night (1967)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 25 October 1967 (Argentina)
An African American police detective is asked to investigate a murder in a racially hostile southern town.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (based on a novel by)
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Popularity
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Won 5 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Virgil Tibbs
... Gillespie
... Sam Wood
... Mrs. Colbert
... Endicott
... Mr. Purdy
... Mayor Schubert
... Mama Caleba
... Courtney
... Henderson
... Watkins
... Packy
... Ulam
... Dr. Stuart
... Delores
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Storyline

Detective Virgil Tibbs is caught up in the racial tension of the US South when he is arrested after the murder of a prominent businessman. Tibbs was simply waiting for his next train at the station in Sparta, Mississippi and the confusion is soon resolved but when local police chief Gillespie learns that Tibbs is the Philadelphia PD's number one homicide expert, he reluctantly asks for his assistance. The murdered man, Mr. Colbert, had come to Sparta from the North to build a new factory and his wife and business associates immediately point the finger at Endicott, the most powerful man in the county and the one who had the most to lose if a major new employer comes to the area. Tibbs' life is clearly in danger but he perseveres in a highly charged and racially explosive environment until the killer is found. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They got a murder on their hands . . . they don't know what to do with it. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 October 1967 (Argentina)  »

Also Known As:

Al calor de la noche  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$24,379,978
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Sound)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's line "They call me Mister Tibbs!" was voted as the #76 of "The 100 Greatest Movie Lines" by Premiere in 2007. See more »

Goofs

After Wood tosses Tibbs' wallet on Gillespie's desk, the pattern of the money sticking out of it changes several times between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ofcr. Sam Wood: Where you keeping the pie tonight?
Ralph Henshaw, diner counterman: I ate the last piece just before you came in.
See more »

Crazy Credits

No uppercase ("capital") letters are used in the opening and closing credits, including the film's title, cast and characters, crew and job titles, and company credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Wild Rebels (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Foul Owl on the Prowl
(uncredited)
Music by Quincy Jones
Lyrics by Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman
Performed by Owens Boomer Castleman and Michael Martin Murphey
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A True Landmark Film
22 February 2006 | by See all my reviews

1967 was a turbulent year in the U S. Civil rights marches and demonstrations, anti-war rallies, the summer of love,psychedelic music and backlash against the previously noted, 1967 had it all. And this great movie came out, about a small Mississippi town embroiled in a steaming hot summer and a sizzling murder case. The movie diverges from the book on many aspects, mostly for the better. This is a serious look at a nation and a community in turmoil. The acting is first rate, from Sidney Poitier (one of the greatest American actors of this generation, regardless of race), Rod Steiger, Lee Grant, Warren Oates and the whole passel of townsfolk. The plot has been well outlined in previous posts, so I won't belabor it. My favorite scene is when Virgil examines the deceased, looking for clues in discoloration, type of wound, etc., while the sheriff looks on with his jaw practically on the floor in amazement. You can plainly see that he wanted to pin the crime on a hitch-hiker or one of the town's less desirable inhabitants. While some may see the film as preachy or presenting Virgil as a superior to the hicks, seen in the context of its time, it really tells a lot about race relations of the time. The movie is well filmed with lots of atmospheric detail of the time and region (even though it was filmed in Illinois, some areas of Illinois and Indiana were very Southern in their feel and outlook). Great acting, a good mystery, fine cinematography and an important theme make this a must-see movie. 10 stars.


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