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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Intelligent, Taut Thriller
Just when you think he's cornered, he thinks of a new strategy. Samuel L. Jackson portrays Lieutenant Danny Roman, police hostage negotiator. When he's framed for a crime he didn't commit, against his fellow police officers no less, he knows that the only way out is to bring in an equally tough negotiator, Lieutenant Chris Sabian played by Kevin Spacey, who's from another...
Published on October 10, 2008 by Justin Heath

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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I was entertained. But not blown away.
Another "hostage scenario with twists" thriller. In it, Samuel Jackson and Kevin Spacey both play police hostage negotiators, operating on opposite sides of the law. Jackson is forced to take hostages in a bid to prove his innocence after he is framed for the murder of his partner. As part of his strategy for exposing the conspiracy of corrupt cops resposnsible for...
Published on July 28, 2005 by Tim Wright


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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Intelligent, Taut Thriller, October 10, 2008
By 
Justin Heath (Stevensville, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
Just when you think he's cornered, he thinks of a new strategy. Samuel L. Jackson portrays Lieutenant Danny Roman, police hostage negotiator. When he's framed for a crime he didn't commit, against his fellow police officers no less, he knows that the only way out is to bring in an equally tough negotiator, Lieutenant Chris Sabian played by Kevin Spacey, who's from another precinct and who therefore could not have been contaminated by the bad elements within his own force, which buys him the necessary time to bluff and blindside while he finds the clues he needs to prove he's innocent. Chicago is taken hostage along with the few people he retains as bargaining chips, and we are taken along for the ride. This was a masterful job of film-making from beginning to end. The characters and story were flawlessly developed. We don't precisely know who's guilty or who's innocent. Roman conducts his interrogation and trial while he negotiates with the police outside, some of whom are working overtime to eliminate Roman before he figures it all out. This all occurs right under the noses of the FBI who are in way over their heads and don't have a clue who's guilty or innocent, just like the rest of us watching. Along the way, we get to witness Roman lecture his underlings about the finer points of negotiations while he himself has just become a hostage taker. "Never say no!" he barks with effective zeal. And he tests his bewildered pupils continuously, who fail continuously. Only Sabian is smart enough to understand what's going on in Roman's mind. The strategy is shared by two men who think alike, who are under stress, and have an innate instinct for lie detection. The screenplay was terrific. The cinematography was effective. The acting of Jackson and Spacey exceptional. And the supporting cast, particularly bad-guy-turned-good-guy Paul Giamatti who provides great comic relief, was outstanding. If you're in the mood for an intelligent, taut thriller, The Negotiator delivers... 9/10.
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39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Negotiator, April 5, 2008
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This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
Someone is embezzling money from the police department, and when Danny Roman is accused of the deed, he ends up taking several hostages within the department when things escalate and get out of hand. Danny has lost confidence in everyone in his own department, so he requests hostage negotiator Chris Sabian to help negotiate, and help prove his innocence. As the situation gets to a critical level, pieces of the puzzle start to fall into place. This is a very intense emotional suspense movie. Samuel Jackson and Kevin Spacey turn in phenomenal performances. This thrill a minute film is a definite must see.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This'll make you fall off your seats every now and then!, March 29, 2006
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
One of the finest police negotiator in the city, Danny Roman (Samuel L. Jackson), is set up and accused of murdering his partner and best friend, Nate Roenick (Paul Guilfoyle) after discovering that money from a police fund is stolen from police just like them, and maybe even those they call "friends". Soon, evidence, circumstances and even close friends all point fingers at Roman, but he isn't even close to giving in. As the story unfolds, Roman storms into the Infernal Affairs hoping to find something about the ones that stole the money and killed Roenick. Though intending to faces Inspector Terence Neibaum and reveal the truth peacefully, Roman is soon forced to take Niebaum, along with others in his office, as hostages. In a matter of short time, Roman is on national television and his previous co-workers are on to stop him. Ironically, he isn't negotiating, but being negotiated with, this time by Lt. Chris Sabian (Kevin Spacey) the best negotiator in the country, but not even the finest can bring Roman down, because he knows the rules of the game. As Roman gets closer to the truth, time is fighting against him, as people forcefully attempt to stop him by all means.

A true classic, redefining the definition of truth and persistence as a strong individual fights through with belief and justice on his shoulders. This suspenseful, exciting, dramatic, and action-filled movie is one not to be missed.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar cast and tight script make for a tense thriller, December 6, 2004
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This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
Lt. Danny Roman (Samuel L. Jackson), a police negotiator, and his partner Nate Roenick (Paul Guilfoyle) discover that someone has been embezzling money from the police retirement fund. When Nate is killed, Danny is set up with planted evidence to take the fall on the embezzlement charges.

When Danny confronts Inspector Terence Neibaum (J.T. Walsh), who works in Internal Affairs, trying to find out why he is being set up, things get out of hand and Danny winds out taking Neibaum and his entire office hostage. Danny insists on speaking only with Lt. Chris Sabian (Kevin Spacey), a police negotiator from a west side precinct who is unknown to their department. Danny's hopes are that with Chris being an outsider, he can help him discover the truth behind the bad cops in his department that killed his partner.

What follows is a tense thriller as step by step, Danny gets closer to the truth behind the very people he has known and worked with for over ten years, building up to a rather predictable and yet intensely climactic ending.

The performances by Samuel Jackson and Kevin Spacey are as good as it gets, backed by terrific supporting roles from David Morse, J.T. Walsh, Siobhan Fallon, Paul Giamatti, and Michael Cudlitz.

The Negotiator stands out amongst other movies of it's genre because of it's tight scripting, excellent editing and photography, and the obvious fact that the actors involved were working as a close team. This is a great thriller, tense from beginning to end, and a definite addition to your DVD collection.

I like the fact that it is definitely enjoyable even after the second and third viewing, knowing who is who the second time around and watching the interaction from the "I know who's guilty" angle, and appreciating the performances all over again. Enjoy!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I was entertained. But not blown away., July 28, 2005
By 
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
Another "hostage scenario with twists" thriller. In it, Samuel Jackson and Kevin Spacey both play police hostage negotiators, operating on opposite sides of the law. Jackson is forced to take hostages in a bid to prove his innocence after he is framed for the murder of his partner. As part of his strategy for exposing the conspiracy of corrupt cops resposnsible for framing him and killing his partner, Jackson calls in the impartial Spacey to act as his negotitator and buy him the time he needs. Meanwhile the corrupt cops are trying to find excuses for killing Jackson while making it look like a neccessary part of the hostage-freeing operation.

Jackson does his usual powerful action hero stuff but think more Danny Glover in lethal weapon than Jules in Pulp Fiction (less cool and swagger). Spacey (surely a true acting god) is somewhat restricted in this role (lets face it the material doesn't really allow him to showcase his full talents), but does a great job of bringing to life the rather pedestrian script.

I was entertained. But not blown away.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Samuel and Kevin turn a Great film into a Brilliant one., April 27, 2001
By 
Bradley Tobin (Penrith, Sydney NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
2 of my All-Time Favourite Actors Square off in "The Negotiator", an Underrated Thriller which still manages to get to me, viewing after viewing after viewing.
Samuel L Jackson plays Danny Roman, a Chicago Hostage Negotiator who is being Set Up for the Murder of his Partner; he realises the only way to prove his Innocence is to Take some Hostages of his own. He demands that they bring in fellow Negotiator Chris Sabian so he can negotiate his way out.
The film is Expertly brought to the screen, for some reason all the Cop stuff looks more Realistic here than in Most Action films. The Technical Advisors deserve a Big pat on the back, as does director F Gary Grey, who resists the temptation to let the film deteriorate into another Bullet-fest. He keeps the Action more on the Intellectual side.
Samuel is as Dynamite as ever. He (and the director) puts us in Roman's shoes and he reacts the way that I would (like Mel Gibson in "Ransom"). Kevin plays Second fiddle to Samuel, but theirs no shame it that, it's still a great fiddle he's playing. He, like Samuel, looks like he's been a hostage negotiator all his life, and they make it look easy.
The only reason the film gets 4 instead of 5 is the ending, which comes to quickly and is a little Anti-climatic. I just didn't seem to want the film to end.
The supporting cast is to Die for. David Morse, John Spencer, Ron Rifkin, Paul Guilfoyle and the Greatly Missed J T Walsh in his last Big Screen role. Unlike many actors whose last films were Flops, (Walter Matthau in "Hanging Up" and Raul Julia in "Streetfighter") Walsh's last role was a Memorable role in a Memorable film.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good cast list , excelent movie, September 22, 1999
By 
"the_guy_to_know" (Luxembourg, in China) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
Kevin Spacey is one of my favourite actors. I havn't seen Samuel L. Jackson much before but he seems to act very well too. I think that it is a really good idea for a film the way that a cop actually takes hostages to prove that he's innocent and that someone else is guilty of killing his partner.I also thought that the negotiations were pretty cool. Well anyway I think that this movie is deffinetly worth it's price and the DVD is cool because it has got quite a few extra features like real negotiations.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cast makes this a great action movie!, December 16, 1999
I have to admit, if this film did not have the acting genius of both Kevin Spacey and Samuel L. Jackson, I'd write it off as another Bruce Willis wannabe. However, both of these heavy-hitters display such intelligence and depth to their respective roles, that I ended up watching it over and over again. Jackson is great as the hostage negotiator who is forced to take hostages himself when he is framed for murder. When Spacey is brought into the fold to talk Jackson down, it becomes a great war of words and wit. Both men have their own agendas, and as actors they have incredible chemistry. The action sequences are good too, and don't weigh down the plot of the story. The supporting cast is great too, and help to add humor to the tense situation at hand. All in all, a great edge-of-your-seat action thriller, with a very good ending. I have watched this over and over, and I still am not bored with it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MUST BEEN SEEN, March 7, 2000
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
It's one of the best films that I have seen in a long time.... Samuel L Jackson and Kevin Spacey really have you on the edge of your seat...
Fantastic film, it keeps you guessing who the bad guys are....
I have seen it several times and it still has me on the edge of my seat....
It's well worth watching... Worth every penny, well, as far as I'm concerned it is....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Underrated Thriller, August 30, 2004
This review is from: The Negotiator (DVD)
One day Lt. Danny Roman (Samuel Jackson) is a celebrated hostage negotiator. The next, he's a suspect, accused of corruption and murder by his own colleagues. Desperate to prove his innocence and discover the truth, Danny takes hostages in a government office, hoping to gain time - and information.

Suspecting that members of his own department may have been involved in framing him, Roman demands to speak to hostage negotiator Lt. Chris Sabian (Kevin Spacey, who is letter-perfect) - a man from across town, a man he doesn't even know.

Under F. Gary Gray's direction, this seemingly unlikely scenario unfolds (for the most part) with surprising convincingness.

Regina Taylor adds a nice dramatic touch as Karen, Roman's young, dedicated wife, who supports him but wishes he would stop acting 'crazy.' The film's best moments, however, come when Samuel Jackson and Kevin Spacey's characters face off. It's an acting showcase of the 'you've gotta see it to believe it' variety.

There's also action here and some very nice cinematography.

Though The Negotiator's running time is 139 minutes, its pace rarely slackens and you'll likely be left guessing til the last minute. You will need your suspension of disbelief to carry you through a few moments, but overall this is an entertaining, fast-paced thriller to be savored for its fine performances.
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The Negotiator
The Negotiator by F. Gary Gray (DVD - 1998)
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