Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Sidney Poitier

I love, love, love movies and earlier this year I started watching old classics in order to educate myself and get some exposure to some of the iconic films that you hear so much about. My mom isn't a huge fan of movies, but she does like some of the oldies, so we like to watch them while we eat dinner.

We've recently been on a Sidney Poitier kick. I didn't really know very much about Sidney Poitier prior to this, just that he was the first black man to win an Academy Award for a leading role. I'm so glad that I've decided to check out some of the movies he's starred in because I absolutely love him! He's extremely talented and is always so kind and gentle in the roles he plays. Here's a recap of the movies we've watched:
Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967): In this film a young woman brings her African-American fiancĂ© home to meet her parents. They have no idea she's even in a relationship OR that she's engaged, let alone to a black man! 
In the Heat of the Night (1967): This film is set in Mississippi and a white man has been murdered in the middle of the night. Sidney's character (who's in town visiting his mother) is found in the town's train station and is questioned in relation to the crime. Sidney actually happens to be a police detective in Philadelphia and he helps the redneck sheriff solve the crime.

A Patch of Blue (1965): In this film Sidney plays a hard-working man who befriends a blind young woman who's had a hard life. Sidney is kind to her and opens up a whole new world for her. They soon fall in love, but the blind young woman doesn't know the man she's been spending so much time with is black until her mother finds out about the relationship and tells her. Her mother is very bigoted and forbids her to see him again. 
To Sir, with Love (1966): In this film Sidney plays a teacher in a working class high school in London. His rowdy bunch of students are often disrespectful, but he's eventually able to gain the upper hand and change the lives of his students.

Lilies of the Field (1963): Sidney plays an ex-soldier in this film who ends up at an isolated farm and soon finds himself building a chapel for the nuns who live there. Sidney won an Academy Award for his role in this film.
A Raisin in the Sun (1961): This film is about an inner-city black family and their struggle to make ends meet. The multi-generational family all live together in a cramped apartment and they face conflict over how to handle things when a $10,000 insurance check arrives in the mail. Sidney plays a chauffeur who wants to use the money to open a liquor store with his friends and is angry with his mother who ultimately decides to use the money to buy a house (which happens to be in an all-white neighborhood).
I've loved all of the SP movies I've watched, but my favorite has been A Patch of Blue (because I'm a sucker for love stories) closely followed by In the Heat of the Night. ("They call me Mr. Tibbs!")

The other day I told my mom that I think I'm in love with SP!  Of course, the SP movies I've been watching are all from the 60's, so I'm falling for the Sidney that's in his 30's! He's now 85, almost 60 years my senior, so I don't think it will work out! ;) Still, I'm a huge fan of his and I love his work! I'd love to be able to meet him, but I doubt it'll happen.


Kendra said...

Thanks for this introduction to his films! I'm ashamed to say I haven't seen any. That will change soon!

Tina said...

I love Sidney Poitier. He seems so regal to me.

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