Freeview film of the day: The Negotiator

Kevin Spacey and Samuel L Jackson deliver powerhouse performances in this clever cat-and-mouse thriller

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The Negotiator ★★★★ 
9.00-11.45pm More4 

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Apparently this was intended as a vehicle for Sylvester Stallone and would surely have been a very different film. Fortunately that didn’t happen. Instead we are offered two excellent actors in fine form Samuel L Jackson and Kevin Spacey. Jackson is a Chicago police hostage negotiator framed for the murder of his partner. He knows he has been framed to cover up corruption within the Chicago PD and, interviewed by the Internal Affairs Division, takes a number of officers hostage and demands that Spacey, a negotiator from another precinct, be brought in to resolve the situation. The plot is padded out with action sequences that lead to murder as the bent cops try to kill Jackson, but the film is at its best in the tense interaction between the two negotiators, who at the start are by no means on the same side, as each seeks to control the other and Jackson tries to convince Spacey that he has been falsely accused.


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