Empire Records

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Empire Records is a 1995 comedy about the employees of an independent music store who learn about each other as they try anything to keep the store from being absorbed by a large chain.

Directed by Allan Moyle. Written by Carol Heikkinen.
Open 'til Midnight. Taglines


  • [on the loudspeaker] Attention Rex Manning fans, to your left you will notice a shoplifter being chased by night manager, Lucas. This young man will be caught, deep fried in a vat of hot oil and served to our first hundred customers. Just another tasty treat from the gang at Empire Records.
  • Oh now, Debra, don't be bitter, surely with your ever growing collection of flesh mutilating silver appendages and your brand new neo-nazi boot camp makeover the boys will come a-runnin'.


  • We mustn't dwell... no, not today. We CAN'T. Not on Rex Manning day!
  • [answers phone] Empire Records, we're open 'til midnight. [pause] Midnight.


Joe: Where's the money, Lucas?
Lucas: Joe, the money is gone.
Joe: I know it's GONE, where's it gone to?
Lucas: Atlantic City.
Joe: Atlantic City. ...Is it coming back from Atlantic City?
Lucas: I... I don't think so.
Joe: What's it doing in Atlantic City?
Lucas: Recirculating.
Joe: Recirculating?
Lucas: Yeah.
Joe: Lucas, listen to me. I told Mitchell Beck that you forgot to deposit the money. I told Mitchell that the money was still here.
Lucas: Joe, that's not true. It's in Atlantic City... I swear!
Joe: Shut up, sit down, and don't you move.
Lucas: [sitting down] It could be in other cities by now...
Joe: Oh, shut up! Under no circumstances do I want you to leave that couch... unless it's to get me $9000, and then you bring it here to me, okay?
Lucas: Okay. You know, I think things are gonna be all right now, Joe.
Joe: Oh? And what makes you think that.
Lucas: Who knows where thoughts come from? They just appear.

A.J: What's with you? Yesterday you were normal and today you're like the Chinese guy from Karate Kid. What's with you today?
Lucas: What's with today, today?

Gina: [about Debra having shaved her head] Well, Sinead O'Rebellion. Shock me, shock me, shock me with that deviant behavior!
Debra: God, that is so clever. You know, I swear you get smarter the shorter your skirt gets.
Gina: And you get smarter the shorter your hair gets, so it's probably good you went with that. It's a wonderful look for you darling.

Mark: Oh, Lucas, I've decided to start a band.
Lucas: Well, the first thing you need is a name. That way you know what kind of band you've got.
Mark: I was thinking Marc.
Lucas: Is that with a "c" or with a "k"?
Mark: Well, my name is with a [looks down at name badge] "k". So my band could be with a "c". That way it's that whole, you know, psychedelic trip thing.
Lucas: Always play with their minds.

A.J.: Joe, I need to ask your advice. Now I know you know a lot about love and women and all that sort of thing...
Joe: Oh, yeah, my wife left me for another woman and my girlfriend forced me to leave at gunpoint. Does this qualify me?
A.J.: Oh yeah, definitely.

[Joe is talking to the police about Warren]
Joe: [to Warren] How old are you?
Warren: Old enough to kick your butt through your skull and splatter your brains on the wall.
Joe: [to the cops on the phone] Yeah, he's a juvenile.

Debra: [Reading the new Musictown rules] No visible tattoos.
Gina: No revealing clothing.
Debra: We're both screwed. At least you're used to it.
Gina: Oh now, Debra, don't be bitter, certainly with your ever growing collection of flesh mutilating silver appendages and your brand new Neo-Nazi boot camp makeover, the boys will come a-runnin'.
Debra: Let's not fight, let's just rip [both start tearing lists of rules]

Warren: Who glued these quarters down?
A.J.: I did.
Warren: What the hell for, man?
A.J.: I don't feel that I need to explain my art to you, Warren.

Jane: What are you doing later?
Joe: I don't know. I'm either going to jail or hell. I can't decide.

A.J.: [on the roof] Hi, what're you doing up here?
[Corey pushes A.J so he falls]
Corey: You listen to me! You're so special and you're so talented and you have everything it takes! You have MORE than everything it takes and you're REALLY stupid because you don't know that. And I know you don't love me anymore, and I know that I blew it but at least I know that, and if you don't go to art school and if you don't understand how special you are then you know nothing!
A.J.: Corey, I...
Corey: And I did love you, and I still... only I didn't realise that it really was love because it was more than love and it wasn't just some stupid feeling in my stomach like everything else and I'll never love anybody as much as you and I hate you! I hate you!
A.J.: Corey, I quit. I quit! [pause] I'm going to art school, in Boston. So I can be near you.


  • Open 'til Midnight.
  • They're selling music but not selling out.
  • Damn the Man! Save the Empire!
  • This music is the glue of the world. It holds it all together.
  • What's with today, today?


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