Sidney Poitier: In The Frame

  |  Buy to Own: 29/10/2007
  |  618 min
Rated TBC by the BBFC


This set contains six films starring Sidney Poitier. In 'To Sir With Love' (1967), Mark Thackeray (Poitier) is an engineer who loses his job and turns to teaching in a tough East End school. He immediately faces hostility from his students who are determined to break his spirit. However, Thackeray counters by treating the teenagers as young adults, attempting to prepare them for life in the outside world. Gradually, as he takes the class on trips to museums and similar outings, Thackeray earns both their affection and respect. Matt Drayton (Spencer Tracy) and wife Christina (Katharine Hepburn) are lost for words when their daughter, Joey (Katharine Houghton), returns from her Hawaiian holiday with a fiancé in tow in 'Guess Who's Coming To Dinner' (1967). What shocks them is not so much that Joey is to wed, but that her proposed husband - research scientist John Prentice (Poitier) - is black. The Draytons have always believed themselves to be broad-minded people, but find this put to the test when John says that the wedding will not go ahead without their whole-hearted approval. In 'A Raisin In The Sun' (1961), the Lee family receive a $10,000 insurance cheque. It represents escape for each of them from their cramped apartment. Walter (Poitier) wants to buy a liquor store, mother Lena (Claudia McNeil) wants to buy a house, and Walter's student sister (Ruby Dee) needs the money to complete medical school. Walter agrees to a compromise with his mother, but then blows all the money on his store. Poitier directed and starred in 'Buck And The Preacher' (1972), the story of a former Union cavalryman turned guide for ex-slaves planning to move West. Accompanying him is a phoney preacher (Harry Belafonte) who is motivated by something othe than the the fear of God. Along the way they run into plenty of trouble with whites who want to keep the slaves as a cheap source of labour. 'Little Nikita' (1988) is a thriller starring Poitier as FBI agent, Roy Parmenter. 20 years ago his partner was killed by a Soviet spy, nicknamed Scuba (Richard Lynch). Still at large, Scuba is now trying to extort the Soviets and to prove he's serious, he's killing their agents one by one, including 'sleepers', agents under deep cover awaiting orders. Roy interviews a high school lad, Jeff Grant (River Phoenix), an applicant to the Air Force Academy. In a routine background check, Roy discovers that Jeff's parents are sleepers. He must see if Jeff is also a spy, confront the parents yet protect them, and catch his nemesis. Meanwhile, the Soviets have sent their own spy-catcher, the loner Karpov (Richard Bradford), to reel in Scuba. In 'The Bedford Incident' (1965), the captain of a US naval destroyer (Richard Widmark) pursues a Russian submarine through the Arctic, ready to give the command for an atomic attack. Poitier plays the journalist along for the ride.