In the Heat of the Night (Guest Speaker)

October 30

Q&A with film historian Peter Evans. Black History Month Film

It’s the 1960s, an African-American detective (Poitier) from Philadelphia becomes reluctantly involved in a murder investigation in a small Mississippi town where the racial tension is almost palpable. With his life under threat and his Southern police partner (Steiger) holding dubious views on race, this is going to be the toughest of assignments. At WFC, when we show a Black History Month film we want it to focus on history and this period evokes such powerful emotions connected with the US Civil Rights Movement, the influence of Martin Luther King and the rise of Malcolm X. We’re lucky to have film historian Peter Evans with us to guide us through the film’s context and implications. In 2002, the film was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the US  Library of Congress as being ‘culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant’. The film itself is excellent, winning Oscars, Golden Globes and BAFTAs with screen-writing, directing awards and acting plaudits going to both Rod Steiger and Sidney Poitier.


Sidney Poitier, Rod Steiger, Warren Oates

Film Information

Title In the Heat of the Night (Guest Speaker)
Directed by Norman Jewison
Country USA
Classification 12
Running Time 108 mins
Release Year 1967
Subtitles No
Colour Yes
Film Notes Download