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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 22.67%
Average: 4%
Pretty Bad: 9.33%
Total Crap: 14.67%

2 reviews, 63 user ratings

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Empire Records
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by Brian McKay

"The Empire Strikes Out"
1 stars

Although I'm in my thirties, I am still able to enjoy a well-crafted teen/young adult comedy -- key words "well crafted". This does not mean genius filmmaking, but merely a competent script and the equally competent execution thereof. Trying to cash in on the cult popularity of more competent films like "Clerks" and "Mall Rats" comes "Empire records", a lame Gen-X "comedy" that falls completely flat. When they were trying to copy those other films, they somehow missed the fact that the formula they are ripping off actually had some funny jokes and clever dialogue to push things along.

The story, such as it is, is that "Joe" (Anthony La Paglia, a mediocre character actor on his best day, and when he's the "star" of the film, you know you're in trouble) manages Empire Records, an independent store where the employees enjoy a laid back atmosphere where they can throw on loud music and start dancing or moshing every five minutes (Which they do, to the point of tedium-ad-fucking-nauseum).

But of course, the record store is about to be sold out to a generic chain, which will destroy this festive minimum wage party paradise forever. When one of the genius employees learns of this impending fate, he decides to take 9000 bones from the store till and go gamble it in Atlantic City so he can get enough money to save the store. Needless to say, he loses it on the first toss of the dice, leaving the next 90 minutes of the film to try and find a way to get the money back.

The young cast of record store employees includes some fairly well-known faces, including Liv Tyler as the sweet and innocent babe, Renee Zelwegger as the vapid, sex-obsessed babe, and Robin Tunney as the rebel-without-a-clue (or hair) babe. Most of the male side are pretty much unknown, at least to me. Rory Cochrane is the genius who decided to gamble the bosses money away, and who spends the remainder of the film being the "intellectual" one, although nothing that ever leaves his mouth is at all intelligent, clever, insightful, or funny. Neither is anything else in the film. It's one of these dismal teen angst comedies without much angst or comedy because you simply don't give a shit about any of these boring pretty young people who think they are so ultra-hip. Liv Tyler looks gorgeous, but she can't act worth a shit and I honestly wish she would quit trying. Go back to modeling, bitch, and shut your pie hole. Renee Zelwegger is trying too hard to be like another actress even more mediocre than herself, Joey Lauren Adams (in fact, I thought it was her at first). I don't really blame the kids, though. With a script as shitty as this one, they never had a chance.

Go rent "Clerks", "Mallrats", or even "American Pie", but don't waste your time with this piece of shit. Only if you're stoned enough to find it funny, or if it's worth it to you to sit through 90 minutes of crap to see 30 seconds of Liv Tyler in her underwear, will you find it worth your while.

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originally posted: 07/23/01 16:58:42
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User Comments

5/31/11 Fatman Walksalone My favourite film! 5 stars
2/22/10 Kevon favorite movie ever 5 stars
10/10/09 Jeff Wilder Acting weak. But the characters and dialogue are great. 4 stars
1/28/09 leoleake01 Empire Records was the best movie ever 5 stars
3/08/07 Stames Haha, I liked this. I really didn't think it hobbled along like most terrible movies do. 4 stars
12/24/06 Brad Champion Bought the DVD for 5 bucks at Walmart. Solid though, if you're stoned. 3 stars
2/08/06 JM Synth Bottom 10 stuff 1 stars
9/16/05 babs AMAZING!!!! 5 stars
9/02/05 ES Good movie, makes you want to work at a record store, makes Renée Zellweger actually hot 4 stars
6/19/05 Sean Lane Anyone who likes this one bit shouldn't breath. Thanks for ruining life. 1 stars
4/14/05 dr. forrester abysmal beyond ALL comprehension! 1 stars
11/13/04 Richard W The film is all about the soundtrack, which is sharp and well matched to the tone. 4 stars
11/10/04 brianna i love this movie. it makes me feel like m not alone in the world. deb reminds me of myself 5 stars
10/30/04 just_anotherguy this movie is realy kool.whoever wrote that review man.dumb ass. 5 stars
10/14/04 chelsea i love this movie!! u losers who wrote those reviews can kiss my ass!! 5 stars
5/29/04 Franziska I loved this film! I rented it, and bought it soon afterwards. Gwaaar! 5 stars
2/16/04 EL indio mayta cool 5 stars
12/30/03 A Guy very good, quite funny 4 stars
11/27/03 lyssa i think this is a great ass rocks reakky hard.... 5 stars
11/20/03 madelin Has a great soundtrack and a good plot.give it a break - its STYLISHLY flaky!nic 5 stars
9/24/03 jackie the BEST movie 5 stars
6/20/03 George Jung Better than most movies in the genre. Good film. 3 stars
6/08/03 Hottie I thought this was a GREAT movie and the actors did great also! 5 stars
4/06/03 Film Dude Go ahead, hate me. It's my guiltiest pleasure. 4 stars
3/28/03 arwen oddstar this was an amazing movie, is that really Renee Zelweger's voice?? 5 stars
2/24/03 Anna This is the best movie ever! lucas is so sexy! 5 stars
1/14/03 .bob mob awsome movie 5 stars
12/22/02 Rebecca This movie rocks! I love Mark! 5 stars
12/12/02 Russell smith this critic obviously didnt even watch the fuckin movie, it rocks my world 5 stars
10/21/02 A smart movie watcher IT WAS AMAZING:) 5 stars
10/03/02 Jason OH REXY YOU'RE SO SEXY! 5 stars
5/22/02 Caseyann Damn the critics! Love the Empire!!! "SHOPLIFTER!" 5 stars
4/05/02 avie this movie ROCKS! and so does mark! HAHAHA! DAMN THE MAN! SAVE THE EMPIRE! 5 stars
1/06/02 Andrew Carden Confusing and Unlikeable 90's Teen-Rock Flick. 2 stars
12/16/01 rosie empire records is my favourite movie ever and i love it! 5 stars
9/25/01 Lindsey This is such a quality flick. This is one of my all time favs 5 stars
8/24/01 Greg Willson needs more nudity or something 3 stars
8/15/01 Dusty Laid-back, enthralling, funny. Not for the intellectually or emotionallly challenged. 5 stars
7/01/01 K8 DAMN THE MAN! SAVE THE EMPIRE! i am completely in love with Ethan Embry(Randall), Mark rox! 5 stars
5/30/01 George Beast This movie ROCKS! Ignore the movie snobs (looking for some deep meaning in EVERY movie). 5 stars
4/18/01 cuntphucer highly over rated 2 stars
2/06/01 Phil M. Afficiando Silly sitcom. Dysfunctional wannabes rally for enlightened mgr. See High Fidelity instead. 2 stars
11/01/00 Tasha Newman totally awesome 5 stars
5/19/00 Elvisfan Fun but not for repeated viewings; liked Ethan & Sexton the most 4 stars
4/09/00 EMagGaRony kicks all ass... it is one of the best movies with the best soundtrack... 5 stars
12/20/99 Lisette Typical teen flick with some good laughs... 4 stars
11/30/99 Reverie SO funny! One of my favorite movies! 5 stars
10/14/99 Hannah Foster I loved this movie! It was witty and I found it funny and entertaining! 5 stars
10/06/99 Sean Yoong Fun, fun, fun!!! 5 stars
9/23/99 Megan A must see for all teens 5 stars
9/15/99 alan l charles predictable, melodramatic, the ususal don't forget your dreams crap 2 stars
8/10/99 meadow FUCKING AWESOME!!! i loved it the first one hundred and twenty seven times i saw it 5 stars
7/30/99 Matthew Bartley Passes the time in a funny kinda way 4 stars
7/30/99 jessica Styles really good 5 stars
6/07/99 Elizaveta Lucas was cool. 2 stars
4/07/99 Maniaq It was good, but WILL become dated in a few years and either a cult classic or embarrassing 4 stars
4/02/99 Cool Thing Never understand what people see in it. Patchy in the extreme. 2 stars
4/02/99 MAD Makes me get so excited I want to glue quarters to the floor! 5 stars
3/30/99 jvt . 2 stars
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  20-Oct-1995 (PG-13)



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