A Review of The Negotiator (1998)

“When your friends betray you, sometimes the only people you can trust are strangers.”

Samuel L. Jackson and Kevin Spacey star in The Negotiator – an action thriller directed by F. Gary Gray, who recently helmed Straight Outta Compton.

This film balances action, drama and an interesting plot in a manner rarely seen in modern day Hollywood.

The Negotiator has a lengthy runtime at 2 hours 20 minutes. The opening is intense. Sam L J is very likeable, until his life begins to unravel and we witness his psyche pushed to the edge (he does get very shouty).

There are plenty of side characters, much like a game of cluedo, that don’t get much character development but exist only to convolute the ‘who-dun-it’ plot. This isn’t a negative, just something to be weary of as a potential viewer.

Kevin Spacey gives a fantastic multi-sided portrayal of a pacifist negotiator who runs on facts. His character enters the film fairly late however, once the plot has really kicked off, as he represents impartiality, blind justice.

It is unfortunate this movie did not even make back its budget at the box office. By today’s standards The Negotiator is a very well rounded movie and it holds up well.

Overall Rating: 7.7/10

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A Review of The Negotiator (1998)

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