John Talley (Bruce Willis) is a shaggy-faced crisis negotiator who's grown so smug that he allows a "situation to get away from him," and a child is murdered. Talley then relocates and takes a police-chief job in Bristo Camino, a small California community where the Haves live in mountain estates and the Have-nots are unmentionable. Hell breaks loose when two teens of the underclass take an affluent family of three hostage though they only wanted the Cadillac Escalade. Turns out the father of the held family has incriminating files on a CD that's wanted by some black-hooded mob. By taking Talley's family hostage, the mob forces Talley to retrieve the disc. We've seen Willis die harder in this role before, but the braided plots do keep you on edge. It's not Willis, however, but the creepier-than-Columbine killer villain Ben Foster (Six Feet Under
) who keeps the movie blazing.