Samuel L. Jackson and Kevin Spacey are both excellent actors, and when two excellent actors are in one movie, something almost certainly has to come of it. Something positive is derived from The Negotiator, a fast-paced and gripping thriller.
While The Negotiator was mainly an action flick, director F. Gary Gray slapped in several dramatic scenes- slow motion, sad music, and flashing lights - which only added to the great cinematography of this film. The scenes were well organized and shot appropriately.
Both star actors in the film delivered strong characters, although I don't understand how Sabian could just take control of a police unit by shouting real loud. Jackson was believable and emotional; a very good job was done maintaining his innocence throughout, although that was questioned a few times. I did wonder about some of the other characters, however- Even the good cops seemed anxious to blow their friend's head off, without giving a second's thought to his innocence. Karen Roman was a little off the mark, though, and even if the type of character she was supposed to portray was what she portrayed, it didn't help.
There were a few little flaws in the movie, such as "Why did he do this instead of that?" (including the question: "Why did he take the building hostage to prove his innocence?"), but as a movie on its own, The Negotiator delivers a two hour thrill ride.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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