7.3/10
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281 user 69 critic

The Negotiator (1998)

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In a desperate attempt to prove his innocence, a skilled police negotiator accused of corruption and murder takes hostages in a government office to gain the time he needs to find the truth.

Director:

F. Gary Gray
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Samuel L. Jackson ... Danny Roman
Kevin Spacey ... Chris Sabian
David Morse ... Adam Beck
Ron Rifkin ... Grant Frost
John Spencer ... Chief Al Travis
J.T. Walsh ... Terence Niebaum
Siobhan Fallon Hogan ... Maggie (as Siobhan Fallon)
Paul Giamatti ... Rudy
Regina Taylor ... Karen Roman
Bruce Beatty ... Markus
Michael Cudlitz ... Palermo
Carlos Gómez ... Eagle
Tim Kelleher ... Argento
Dean Norris ... Scott
Nestor Serrano ... Hellman
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Storyline

In the midst of an elaborate conspiracy, an expert negotiator is driven to the edge when he's framed for the murder of his partner, as well as embezzling money from his department's pension fund. His only chance to prove his innocence is to take hostages himself, acquire the services of another expert negotiator, and find out who's running the conspiracy before it's too late. Written by Ted Walters

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He frees hostages for a living. Now he's taking hostages to survive. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 July 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El mediador See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,218,831, 2 August 1998, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$44,484,065, 1 November 1998

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,400,000, 25 October 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS-Stereo | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the lengthy phone conversations between the two leads, Kevin Spacey made a point of being on set to help Samuel L. Jackson with his performance. See more »

Goofs

The ambulance at the end of the movie is an AMR unit. AMR does not operate in the City of Chicago (nor Cook County). That should have been either a Chicago Fire Department or Superior Ambulance. See more »

Quotes

Lieutenant Chris Sabian: I want you to apologize for telling your mother she looks...
[Sabian's daughter makes a huge gesture with her hands]
Lieutenant Chris Sabian: Wide.
[Sabian smiles and whispers at his daughter]
Lieutenant Chris Sabian: Wide's not a good word, how'd you like to be called wide?
See more »

Connections

References Red River (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

Flyin' High (In the Friendly Sky)
(1971)
Performed by Marvin Gaye
Written by Marvin Gaye, Anna Gordy Gaye, Elgie Stover
Courtesy of Motown Record Company, L.P.
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Music
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Edge of the seat
1 August 2009 | by SandcoolerSee all my reviews

Samuel L. Jackson is probably one of the most awesome actors that ever lived, and his pure uncut awesomeness is captured perfectly in this well thought-out thriller. He's angry. He's looking for justice. Don't get in his way. The plot moves at a breakneck pace, and the length of the running time will probably go completely unnoticed because the direction looks so compact. This movie is over two hours long? I really have a hard time believing that. It just flies by, even though most of it happens in and around one location. With a build-up this exciting, the conclusion is usually a disappointment, but even that's not the case here. This is a rush of adrenaline captured on celluloid.


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