In the 1954 Cahiers du Cinéma essay “Une certaine tendance du cinéma français,” François Truffaut proposed what came to be known as “the auteur theory”: Films should be direct expressions of the filmmakers, and directors should be the “authors” of their movies. It’s an idea that holds a lot of sway in the hip-hop community, apparently. How else do you explain the endless string of vaguely autobiographical direct-to-video movies starring, and largely directed and written by, famous rappers? The latest is 50 Cent’s Before I Self Destruct, released last week along with his album of the same name; like many of its peers, it’s low budget, hyperviolent, clichéd — and strangely alluring. Click through to find out why.