Sidney Poitier and Tony Curtis co-star as a pair of escaped convicts
chained together and on the run in the South. Like all of Poitier's Civil
Rights-era films, this is primarily a treatise on racism. But, much the same as
1967's "In the Heat of the ... moreNight" (starring Poitier and Rod Steiger), "The
Defiant Ones" actually tracks the unlikely love that grows between two men who
start out hating each other. Poitier and Curtis are bound by a chain made of
more than metal; it is the metaphoric chain of hatred and racial intolerance.
But when the chain is finally broken, they are free to love each other.