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In the Heat of the Night


by Vivian Rose

"In the Heat of the Night" is an absorbing film that takes place in the 1960's.

When a wealthy, white man from Chicago (who is building a factory that will employ 1,000 people, including 500 African-Americans) is murdered in a small southern town, the police realize that they need to catch someone - anyone- and claim to have the killer - fast. When an officer stumbles upon Virgil Tibbs (Sydney Poitier), an African-American man waiting to catch a train, he arrests him and hauls him into the station. Apparently he figures that an African-American will be a perfect scapegoat in their very segregated, and prejudiced town.

Much to the police department's embarrassment, Tibbs turns out to be a police officer from Philadelphia (and conveniently enough, the best homicide detective on the force). Since he's a homicide expert, and the police officers in this small hick town don't know the first thing about investigating homicides, they ask for Virgil's help in solving the crime.

The plot twists and turns in this murder mystery kept me guessing until the end. All the actors were excellent, and the characters were very intricate and intriguing. "In the Heat of the Night" was certainly an entertaining movie to watch.

My rating: 3 stars
Rating: PG