To his credit, 50 Cent seems to be trying to give a good performance- although notice I said trying, as that and succeeding are not the same thing. He's done no favours by the script- which tries hard to be gritty in the vein of THE WIRE or THE SHIELD, but comes off as a simplistic imitation. De Niro more or less just chews the scenery in his handful of scenes, including a howler where he commands 50 Cent to snort a line of cocaine (screaming “SNORT THAT LINE”). He plays his crooked cop in such a two-dimensionally evil way that all he's missing is a tail and a pitch-fork.
Still, he comes off remarkably well compared to poor Forest Whitaker, who embarrasses himself as 50's coke-addled training officer. He's way, way, WAAAAAYYYY over the top, constantly snorting lines, and putting his fingers in his mouth. It would be funny if it weren't for the fact that Whitaker deserves so much more.
Cougar-rific Dana Delany pops up in a tiny role- looking sexy as ever (she was one of my first crushes, thanks to the constant running of EXIT TO EDEN on cable when I was younger). A couple of WIRE vets, including the great Andre Royo as 50's dad, show up- in what I suppose was an effort to give this a little cred. Doesn't work though.