Blu-ray, DVD Release: In the Heat of the Night

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Jan. 29, 2018
Price: DVD $17.97, Blu-ray $26.61
Studio: Criterion

In the 1967 drama In the Heat of the Night, Philadelphia detective Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier, The Slender Thread) passes through the backwoods town of Sparta, Mississippi and becomes embroiled in a murder case. He forms an uneasy alliance with the bigoted police chief (Rod Steiger, On the Waterfront), who faces mounting pressure from Sparta’s hostile citizens to catch the killer and run the African American interloper out of town.

Director Norman Jewison (Rollerball) splices incisive social commentary into this thrilling police procedural with the help of Haskell Wexler’s vivid cinematography, Quincy Jones’s eclectic score, and two indelible lead performances-a career-defining display of seething indignation and moral authority from Poitier and an Oscar-winning master class in Method acting from Steiger.

Winner of five Academy Awards, including one for Best Picture, In the Heat of the Night is one of the most courageous Hollywood films of the civil rights era.

Criterion’s new Blu-ray and DVD editions contain the following:

* New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
* New interview with director Norman Jewison
* New interview with actor Lee Grant
* New interview with Aram Goudsouzian, author of Sidney Poitier: Man, Actor, Icon
* Audio commentary from 2008 featuring Jewison, Grant, actor Rod Steiger, and cinematographer Haskell Wexler
* Turning Up the Heat: Movie-Making in the ’60s, a 2008 program about the production of the film and its legacy, featuring Jewison, Wexler, producer Walter Mirisch, and filmmakers John Singleton and Reginald Hudlin
* Quincy Jones: Breaking New Sound, a 2008 program about Jones’s innovative soundtrack, including its title song sung by Ray Charles, featuring interviews with Jones, lyricists Alan and Marilyn Bergman, and musician Herbie Hancock
* Trailer
* An essay by critic K. Austin Collins

Buy or Rent In the Heat of the Night

About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.