Directed: Charles Winkler
Writer: Eugene Hess
Guess what? 50 Cent made another DTV slog with Val Kilmer. Who knew. This time they both play New Orleans cops working in the narcotic division. 50 Cent is the family man and Kilmer is the lone wolf. They are partnered up early in the flick and they try to keep the streets of the New Orleans clean, although the recent devastations caused by the floods make obtaining the law even more difficult. A local drug kingpin is eliminating his competition, so the cops are assigned to make some arrests fast. Their job is made even more difficult by an resilient F.B.I. agent (Michael Biehn) who’s investigating corruption inside the narcotics division, fueled by a shooting where another team of narcotics officer shot a dealer point blank. These two are corrupted beyond comparison and break the law as much as they enforce it. Can 50 Cent’s Det. Johnson and Val Kilmer’s Det. Deveraux manage to keep their hands clean?
Streets of Blood tries so hard to be like Michael Mann’s film version of Miami Vice, but director Charles Winkler can’t handle his shit like Mann does. There are scenes where both fitty-cent and Ice-Man himself are sitting at a police shrink’s office spewing badly-written problems the job lays out. And the shrink (Sharon Stone, what the hell are you doing here?) has no advice for them, so these scenes go without a point. And there’s a lot of these scenes.
The flooded New Orleans is a great setting for a film, but Streets of Blood hardly utilizes the landscape. A few stock footages scattered here and there, far from impressive. The photography is appalling standard handheld washed out DTV quality. That too tries to look like Miami Vice. It’s not even close. The editing looks like a nine-year old found one effect filter and went with it. There are also these weird still frames at the end of few scenes that even further hyphens the amateur quality. And I’ve heard better use of music in porno films.
Acting, you say? 50 Cent is really bland. Once again Miami Vice comes to mind. Curtis Jackson tries to emulate what Jamie Foxx did with his Ricardo Tubbs. But where Jamie Foxx was focused and deliberative, Jackson feels uninterested and incapable. Sharon Stone has charisma that oozes out of her even if she was sleepwalking her part, which she does here. Michael Biehn is here to collect a paycheck, as is Barry Shabaka Henley, who plays the chief. Incidentally, take a guess where he also played a police chief similar to this one. That’s right… in Miami Vice. But hey, Val Kilmer gives a decent performance and the dude is in good shape physically here. Working out payed off, Madmartigan.
But the truly worst offender is the fact that the script and the directing make the cop duo seem like incompetent morons. The very first bust they do end up in having the bad guy disarming Kilmer and having them rolling down a hill struggling after the apprehension has already been made. Not even rookie cops would make an arrest as unprofessionally as they do one here. And there’s also a snitch among them that leak information to the Feds, but you can instantly guess who did it as fast as it’s mentioned in the first place. And doesn’t it feel odd that a gangsta rapper who famously made a name for himself by declaring his hatred for the Police force is now acting one? It’s almost as bad as if a former N.W.A. member Ice Cube would do the same thing-
So, yeah. This film is basic DTV shit. Only Kilmer fans might get something out of this. And he’s already done his times in these crappy films. Hollywood, welcome the guy back. He’ll be good this time. Honestly.
Best Scene: Michael Biehn interviewing Val Kilmer, and him turning the tables on him. That was good.
Most Memorable Bit: Val Kilmer’s weight loss.