History Film / InTheHeatOfTheNight

26th Dec '17 10:09:36 PM DeusDenuo
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On his way back home after visiting his mother, black Philadelphian Virgil Tibbs (Poitier) is arrested on suspicion of the murder of a prominent factory owner in Sparta, Mississippi due to the simple circumstance of being black and having money in his pocket. However, while the police are questioning him he reveals that he is in fact a police officer himself, and when he has Police Chief Bill Gillespie (Steiger) contact his department for verification he is told by his superiors that he should assist the locals in solving the case -- partnered with the same casually racist Gillespie. It's a rocky start to the partnership, but the more Tibbs displays his detective prowess, the more Gillespie comes to respect him. Working together, chasing several false leads, and fighting against the truly rabid racism of some of the local rednecks, they solve the case.

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On his way back home after visiting his mother, black Philadelphian Virgil Tibbs (Poitier) is arrested on suspicion of the murder of a prominent factory owner in [[DeepSouth Sparta, Mississippi Mississippi]] due to the simple circumstance of being black and having money in his pocket. However, while the police are questioning him he reveals that he is in fact a police officer himself, and when he has Police Chief Bill Gillespie (Steiger) contact his department for verification he is told by his superiors that he should assist the locals in solving the case -- partnered with the same casually racist Gillespie. It's a rocky start to the partnership, but the more Tibbs displays his detective prowess, the more Gillespie comes to respect him. Working together, chasing several false leads, and fighting against the truly rabid racism of some of the local rednecks, they solve the case.



* AdaptationalVillainy: Endicott, the plantation owner, is a sympathetic character in the novel with no hint of racial prejudice. In the movie he's an unabashed racist whose goons try to kill Tibbs after their confrontation.
* AngryBlackMan: Tibbs has every reason for his patience to be tested, and he later admits that his anger got him on the wrong track for a bit.

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* AdaptationalVillainy: Endicott, the plantation owner, is a sympathetic character in the novel with no hint of racial prejudice. In the movie he's an unabashed racist whose goons racist, and a few toughs try to kill gang-beat Tibbs after their confrontation.
* AngryBlackMan: Tibbs has every reason for his patience to be tested, and he later admits that his anger prejudice got him on the wrong track for a bit.



* CharacterTics: Gillespie chews gum constantly.
* ChekhovsGunman: [[spoiler:The guy who works at the diner, who basically plays no role in the story at all and is only scene in two scenes, until the end when he's revealed to be the murderer.]]
* DeepSouth

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* CharacterTics: Gillespie chews gum constantly.
constantly. (Rod Steiger initially didn't like the idea, until he realized that he could use it to show Gillespie emoting.)
* ChekhovsGunman: [[spoiler:The guy who works at the diner, who basically plays no role in the story at all and is only scene seen in two scenes, until the end when he's revealed to be the murderer.]]
* DeepSouth
murderer... in the process, murdering another man.]]



* FalseRapeAccusation: Or statutory rape, anyway. [[JailBait Delores Purdy]] accuses Sam Wood of impregnating her to cover for Ralph Henshaw.

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* FalseRapeAccusation: Or statutory rape, anyway. [[JailBait Delores Purdy]] accuses is convinced to accuse officer Sam Wood of impregnating her her, to cover for Ralph Henshaw.



* LondonEnglandSyndrome: When they first meet, Tibbs tells Gillespie he's from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, ''not'' Philadelphia, Mississippi. [[JustifiedTrope Gillespie was checking which Philly Tibbs was referring to.]]
* MakingLoveInAllTheWrongPlaces: Delores Purdy tells Gillespie that Sam Wood got her pregnant after taking her to the cemetery for sex, although this turns out to be false testimony.

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* LondonEnglandSyndrome: When they first meet, Tibbs tells Gillespie he's from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, ''not'' Philadelphia, Mississippi. [[JustifiedTrope Gillespie was checking which Philly Tibbs was referring to.]]
]][[note]]It's apparently also a reference to [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murders_of_Chaney,_Goodman,_and_Schwerner a then-infamous incident]] in Philadelphia, MS.[[/note]]
* MakingLoveInAllTheWrongPlaces: Delores Purdy tells Gillespie that Sam Wood got her pregnant after taking her to the cemetery for sex, although this turns out to be false testimony. (In a hot-as-balls place like Sparta, MS, a granite slab in a cemetery is a relief.)



* NothingButHits: Averted. It was an uncomfortably low-budget production, so it was easier and/or cheaper to just have Quincy Jones write all the music, not just the soundtrack.
** Additionally, the jazz-styled soundtrack would have been difficult to assemble with hits at the time, as jazz as a genre simply didn't have artistic cachet until later.



** More worryingly, the police department is ''very'' quick to jump to conclusions without further investigation. (ex: Sam Wood got put in jail on both murder and statutory rape charges, one cell over from the ''previous'' suspect in that same murder case.)



* RunForTheBorder: Harvey Oberst, fleeing from the Sparta police, almost makes it across the Mississippi River bridge to Arkansas... except that Gillespie, already parked on the Mississippi end in his car, simply drives up and intercepts him mid-span.

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* RunForTheBorder: Harvey Oberst, fleeing from the Sparta police, almost makes it across the Mississippi River bridge to Arkansas... except that Gillespie, already parked on the Mississippi end in his car, simply drives up and ''slowly'' intercepts him mid-span.



* SceneryCensor: The opening sequence has Sgt. Wood, out on his regular nightly patrol, stopping outside the house of a gorgeous, busty, naked young Delores Purdy, who seems to know that he is outside looking. In both a long shot and a medium shot, the window sash is carefully placed to hide the woman's nipples.
* ShamelessFanserviceGirl: Delores Purdy parades around her kitchen in the nude to get her kicks.

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* SceneryCensor: The opening sequence has Sgt. Wood, out on his regular nightly patrol, stopping outside the house of a gorgeous, busty, naked young Delores Purdy, who seems to know that he is outside looking. In both a long shot and a medium shot, the window sash rail is carefully placed to hide the woman's nipples.
* ShamelessFanserviceGirl: Delores Purdy parades around her kitchen in the nude topless (nude?) to get her kicks.



* TeethClenchedTeamwork: Gillespie is not too thrilled to have Tibbs second-guessing him during the early part of the investigation, but when Tibbs keeps getting proved correct, Gillespie lets up on the animosity. For his part, Tibbs does not help ease tensions as he withholds key observations at times and keeps trying to lead the investigation ''his'' way.

to:

* TeethClenchedTeamwork: Gillespie is not too thrilled to have Tibbs second-guessing him during the early part of the investigation, but when Tibbs keeps getting proved correct, Gillespie lets up on the animosity. For his part, Tibbs does not help ease tensions as he withholds key observations at times by being both the smartest cop in town and keeps trying to lead the investigation ''his'' way.black at a time of ''fragile'' race relations.



** The second is Harvey Oberst, a guy who was caught with Colbert's wallet. Virgil clears him on the grounds that he is left-handed and the blows to Colbert's head were from the right hand.
** The third is [[spoiler:Sam Wood, one of Gillespie's men]], who deposited a large amount of cash around the time of the murder, and lied about the road he drove on [[spoiler:during his beat. The reason for his lie is because he didn't want reveal he was eyeing Delores Purdy, who is notorious for parading around in the nude. He also couldn't have murdered Colbert, because the person who killed Colbert drove the dead man's car. Sam couldn't have driven that car and his own patrol car.]]
** While he's never formally charged or accused, Endicott is briefly suspected by Tibbs due to his opposition to Colbert's factory and the discovery of a fern from his greenhouse being found in the dead man's car.

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** The second is Harvey Oberst, a guy who was caught with Colbert's wallet. Virgil clears him on the grounds that he is left-handed and the blows to Colbert's head were from the right hand.
hand. (Clears him of murder; he remains guilty of theft.)
** The third is [[spoiler:Sam Wood, one of Gillespie's men]], who deposited a large amount of cash around the time of the murder, and lied about the road he drove on [[spoiler:during his beat. The reason for his lie is because is, he didn't want reveal he was eyeing drove that route to eye Delores Purdy, who is notorious for parading around in the nude.nude, and he didn't want Tibbs to see and/or Gillespie to know about it. He also couldn't have murdered Colbert, because the person who killed Colbert drove the dead man's car. Sam couldn't have driven that car and his own patrol car.]]
** While he's never formally charged or accused, Endicott is briefly suspected by Tibbs due to his opposition to Colbert's factory and the discovery of a fern from his greenhouse being found in the dead man's car. (Neither Tibbs nor Gillespie like him so they also don't work to clear him as a suspect, and he's only proven innocent when the real murderer confesses.)
15th Nov '17 8:19:23 PM PaulA
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Added DiffLines:

* ATasteOfTheirOwnMedicine: A rich white bigot slaps Det. Virgil Tibbs for daring to question him on suspicion of murder. To the shock of white viewers and the delight of black ones, Tibbs instantly slaps the bigot back, an act that was previously ''unthinkable'' for African American characters in mainstream Hollywood films.
18th Oct '17 11:19:31 AM xcountryguy
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* ChekhovsGunman: [[spoiler: The guy who works at the diner, who basically plays no role in the story at all and is only scene in two scenes, until the end when he's revealed to be the murderer.]]

to:

* ChekhovsGunman: [[spoiler: The [[spoiler:The guy who works at the diner, who basically plays no role in the story at all and is only scene in two scenes, until the end when he's revealed to be the murderer.]]



** The third is [[spoiler: Sam Wood, one of Gillespie's men]], who deposited a large amount of cash around the time of the murder, and lied about the road he drove on [[spoiler:during his beat. The reason for his lie is because he didn't want reveal he was eyeing Delores Purdy, who is notorious for parading around in the nude. He also couldn't have murdered Colbert, because the person who killed Colbert drove the dead man's car. Sam couldn't have driven that car and his own patrol car.]]

to:

** The third is [[spoiler: Sam [[spoiler:Sam Wood, one of Gillespie's men]], who deposited a large amount of cash around the time of the murder, and lied about the road he drove on [[spoiler:during his beat. The reason for his lie is because he didn't want reveal he was eyeing Delores Purdy, who is notorious for parading around in the nude. He also couldn't have murdered Colbert, because the person who killed Colbert drove the dead man's car. Sam couldn't have driven that car and his own patrol car.]]
3rd Oct '17 9:31:40 AM dpisel01
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* HeatWave: It's September, but Sparta is still in the grip of one of these.

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* HeatWave: It's September, but being in Mississippi, Sparta is still in the grip of one of these.
3rd Oct '17 9:28:35 AM dpisel01
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* LondonEnglandSyndrome: When they first meet, Tibbs tells Gillespie he's from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, ''not'' Philadelphia, Mississippi. [[JustifiedTrope Gillespie was checking which Phillie Tibbs was referring to.]]

to:

* LondonEnglandSyndrome: When they first meet, Tibbs tells Gillespie he's from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, ''not'' Philadelphia, Mississippi. [[JustifiedTrope Gillespie was checking which Phillie Philly Tibbs was referring to.]]



* TheyCallMeMisterTibbs: Virgil Tibbs says this to Gillespie after the latter asks him how he is addressed up North.

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* TheyCallMeMisterTibbs: The trope namer. Virgil Tibbs says this to Gillespie after the latter asks him how he is addressed up North.
12th Jun '17 9:05:07 PM nombretomado
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The film received seven AcademyAward nominations, winning for Best Picture, Actor (Steiger), Editing (Creator/HalAshby), Adapted Screenplay (Stirling Silliphant), and Sound. Poitier went on to reprise his role in the sequels ''They Call Me Mister Tibbs!'' (1970) and ''The Organization'' (1971), both of which are set in San Francisco and feature more of an urban flavor.

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The film received seven AcademyAward UsefulNotes/AcademyAward nominations, winning for Best Picture, Actor (Steiger), Editing (Creator/HalAshby), Adapted Screenplay (Stirling Silliphant), and Sound. Poitier went on to reprise his role in the sequels ''They Call Me Mister Tibbs!'' (1970) and ''The Organization'' (1971), both of which are set in San Francisco and feature more of an urban flavor.
13th May '17 8:04:44 PM Mdumas43073
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* SourceMusic: Officer Wood listens to music on a portable radio in his patrol car, while Henshaw plays records on the jukebox at his diner.

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* SourceMusic: Officer Wood listens to music on a portable radio in his patrol car, while Henshaw plays records on the jukebox at his diner.Compton's.
13th May '17 8:03:51 PM Mdumas43073
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Added DiffLines:

* GreasySpoon: Compton's Cafe, where Ralph Henshaw works.
13th May '17 7:58:19 PM Mdumas43073
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Added DiffLines:

* SourceMusic: Officer Wood listens to music on a portable radio in his patrol car, while Henshaw plays records on the jukebox at his diner.
13th May '17 2:07:51 PM Mdumas43073
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* RunForTheBorder: Harvey Oberst, fleeing from the Sparta police, almost makes it across the Mississippi River bridge to Arkansas... except that Gillespie is already parked on the Mississippi end in his car and simply drives up and intercepts him mid-span.

to:

* RunForTheBorder: Harvey Oberst, fleeing from the Sparta police, almost makes it across the Mississippi River bridge to Arkansas... except that Gillespie is Gillespie, already parked on the Mississippi end in his car and car, simply drives up and intercepts him mid-span.
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