Posted On March 30, 2014 By In Movies

Empire Records: An Unappreciated Classic


Happy Rex Manning Day!

If you know what that phrase means, wonderful! You deserve a cookie and as soon as I find you, I will give you one! If you’re confused, don’t worry: most of America would be. I’m quoting one of my favorite movies of all time.

Empire Records is a cult classic, and if you have a chance I highly recommend you see it, immediately. It has some of the best quotes and music the 90s had to offer. It was released in 1995. It actually has quite an all-star cast even though I never realized that until now. I came across the movie in ’04, I believe, and I still quote it with my best friend to this day.

This 90-minute comedy was written by Carol Heikkinen and directed by Allan Moyle. It stars a very young Liv Tyler, Renee Zellweger, Ethan Embry, Robin Tunney, and Anthony LaPaglia, to name a few, in this gripping film. It’s a comedy overall, but there are many side-stories going on in the day-to-day lives of these high school students.

Empire Records follows a crew of misfits throughout a day in their busy lives at a record shop. Watching this movie in today’s society is rough. All there is anymore is iTunes, and the option to torrent music, for the most part. This is a movie that shows the good times of listening to records in booths of amazing bands, such as Gin Blossoms, The Cranberries, Dire Straits, and even the classic “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles.

I don’t know about the other days in their lives, but the movie covers one day in particular that is hectic for all those involved. They actually feature the band GWAR for a brief time. To those mourning the late singer, you may enjoy that scene of the movie. Not only does a situation arise due to Lucas [Rory Cochrane] closing the night before but they also have a celebrity named Rex Manning visiting their store. Granted he’s a B- List pop star, but that doesn’t mean Corey [Liv Tyler] idolizes him any less. In fact, at one point she considers losing her virginity to him. Meanwhile, Joe [Anthony LaPaglia] has a crisis of his own, but that doesn’t stop the rest of the crew from dedicating songs to their fellow employees.

The movie only grossed $303,841 in sales, but it’s an amazing piece that is worth far more than that in my eyes. With its humor and lines you can quote for days, it is a piece that speaks to misfits in many ways, in my opinion. If you enjoy shaving your head, gluing quarters to a floor, or love a washed-up pop star years after their career goes to shit, this movie is for you. Just know that you should “Say No More Mon Amore”.


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Samantha Perry is a writer for Writtalin. Samantha is an aspiring 26 year old writer, with dreams of changing the world. She spends hours writing sometimes poignantly painful truths about her life, but all with a humor few can refuse. She spends her free time with her ferocious killing pug, and enjoying Fat Tire with good friends. She is currently a psychology student who loves figuring out who people are, and what makes them tick. This tattooed and pierced outspoken firecracker will be the change she wishes to see in the world; at least that's what the tattoo on her left shoulder blade says.