Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2005)
R Dir: Jim Sheridan | Paramount | 116 min.

Review By: Fusion3600 | January 28th, 2012

Plot: What’s it about?

Marcus (Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson) grew up without a father and his mother offered little guidance, since she was a negative influence on his life. She was addicted to drugs and sold herself on the street in order to finance her addiction. But when she is killed, Marcus is given a chance to have a better life, as he is sent to live with grandparents. In his new home, he is loved and cared for, as his grandparents are good people, but even this isn’t enough to turn Marcus around. He is still lured into the street lifestyle, especially once he meets a man named Majestic (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), an experienced street thug who has his practices down to a science. So Majestic takes Curtis under his wing so to speak, showing him the ways of the street. This includes how to peddle narcotics and how to solve problems with violence. As he engages in street battles and gets deep into guns, drugs, and violence, Marcus pushes back his dream of being a rap star. But when a chance comes in an unlikely place, he takes the opportunity. But can he achieve his dream of rap stardom, or will he be stuck in his life of street thug existence forever?

In the tradition of Cool as Ice, which set the standard for rappers to create self indulgent autobiographical films, comes Get Rich or Die Tryin’. I have never heard a 50 Cent song and I have no real interest in his work, as I don’t like rap music that much. I didn’t get swept into the Eminem craze, but I did see the movie 8 Mile and man, do I wish I had that hour and a half back. I had reservations about Get Rich or Die Tryin’ as a result and as it turns out, this is another total waste of time. 50 Cent plays himself, with a different name and who knows how much of this tale is real and how much is fiction. I’d lean toward a lot of fiction, as this plays like paint by numbers street thug cinema. You can’t really get behind 50 Cent in this movie, because he is a bad person and to me, he is still presented like someone to be looked up to here. That is a shame. I found Get Rich or Die Tryin’ to be a basic, formulaic motion picture with no real draw to mention. If you’re a fan of 50 Cent, then you’ll probably love it, but otherwise, steer clear of this stinker.

Video: How does it look?

Get Rich or Die Tryin’ is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen. The source print is pristine and shows no grain, which means the visuals come across in sharp and ever impressive form. The colors stream across the screen in vivid hues and no signs of flaws, while flesh tones seem natural and consistent also. No issues in terms of contrast either, as black levels are razor sharp and no visible detail loss is evident. The transfer is also free from compression errors, so this is a great looking visual effort.

Audio: How does it sound?

The included Dolby Digital 5.1 option is all about gunshots and rap music, both amped up to provide the most possible power. So yes, this is a loud and in your face mix as far as these elements, with deep bass and the rap soundtrack sounds terrific here. But that doesn’t mean this is an excellent overall treatment, as the rest of the elements come off as rather basic. Not bad, but I expected a fuller and more immersive total package, whereas the focus seems to have been on the music. This is a solid soundtrack overall, but more attention to the subtle elements could have done a lot here. This disc also includes a 2.0 surround option, a French language track, and subtitles in English and Spanish.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This disc includes a brief behind the scenes featurette, as well as the film’s theatrical trailer.

Disc Features
  • (2.35:1) Aspect Ratio
  • Video Codec: MPEG-2
  • Audio: Dolby Digital
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Audio Commentary
  • Deleted Scene(s)
  • Featurette
  • Documentary
  • Digital Copy
  • 1 Disc Set
Get Rich or Die Tryin’

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Audio
Extras