You can’t go wrong with Sidney Poitier. This F*@% Yeah scene was famous with a whole generation of movie goers – so famous that they named an entire movie after the line Poitier utters in the scene. That’s how bad-ass this scene is. I’d love to see a Star Trek movie starring George Takei called “Target the Center of That Explosion and Fire!”
Anyway, In the Heat of the Night is a gripping crime drama about a black police detective named Virgil Tibbs (Poitier) who investigates a murder with a redneck sheriff (Rod Steiger) in a small Southern town. Hilarity ensues. The great thing about the movie is that at the end, Tibbs and the sheriff haven’t magically become buddies and come to understand each other or some happy bullshit like that. At best, the two cops have formed an uneasy détente.
There’s a famous exchange at the beginning of the film where Steiger and Poitier’s characters become acquainted. The sheriff asks Tibbs in a disrespectful tone, “What do the call you up there?” Poitier fixes him with a “fuck you” glare and says in a dignified, outraged voice: “They call me Mr. Tibbs!”
F*@% Yeah! I love that scene!
In the Heat of the Night was so popular that it led to a sequel called – you guessed it – They Call Me Mr. Tibbs, a TV show starring Carol O’Connor, and a series of TV commercials. “They call me Mr. Tibbs – by dialing 1-800-COLLECT!”
OK, I’m kidding about that last one.
To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Harper Lee’s classic (and only) novel was the inspiration for an equally classic movie starring Gregory Fucking Peck as Southern lawyer and widower Atticus Finch, who raises two precocious youngsters while defending a black client unjustly accused of the rape of a white woman. If you have not read the book or seen the movie, you are missing out BIG TIME and are probably a communist.
Again, this is a movie with more than one F*@% Yeah moment, but my choice is the scene where Atticus Finch gathers his papers into a briefcase and walks out of the courtroom. In the segregated South, all the black townfolk have to sit in the courtroom’s hot balcony, and as he passes below them, they all stand out of respect.
F*@% Yeah! That gets me every time.