Critic Reviews



Based on 23 critic reviews provided by
Chicago Sun-Times
A triumph of style over story, and of acting over characters.
This little-hyped thriller emerges as a dark-horse winner by reminding us of how pleasurably exciting a popcorn movie can be when it's populated by actors who are in it for more than an exorbitant fee.
Entertainment Weekly
The Negotiator, once it gets going (there's a rather lengthy prosaic setup), is a satisfyingly tense and booby-trapped thriller about the meeting of two relentless minds.
Once the initial setup has been accomplished and the film kicks into high gear, it grabs the viewer's attention and holds it for the rest of the running time.
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
From the film's bravura opening scene to its cute but bloody conclusion, The Negotiator plays out as tautly as any crowd-pleasing action flick since Die Hard,which it emulates with shameless glee.
This taut crime thriller is a welcome antidote to brainless action extravaganzas in which the mayhem is the message, and rests on two shrewd, perfectly modulated performances.
Film Threat
Jackson gives an amazing, nuanced performance as he teeters on the edge of paranoia. Spacey gives a great, toned-down show as I guy who's in over his head trying to find out what the hell is going on.
The Negotiator falls short of greatness by a country mile; it's too chatty for its own good sometimes. But it's still a solid shoot-'em-up.
The movie has finesse, and the actors have charm, but there are no surprises.
When the mystery is unraveled and the frame-up is revealed, I, personally, had no idea what anyone was talking about.
Christian Science Monitor
The concept of dueling negotiators has strong dramatic potential, but Gray seems more interested in gimmicks and gunshots than in the psychological face-off between sharp-witted foes.

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