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A young Latino gangster’s domain is a successful "street pharmaceutical" business, built around a customized heroin mixture he has dubbed "Empire." But when he tries to buy his way out, he finds the old ties are not so easy to break - and that the price of going legit is much higher than he ever could have imagined.
Drama - The target young adult audience, particularly males, is the
demographic indeed most likely to enjoy this violent urban drama.
The violence and language make the film inappropriate for children,
and that content may turn off older viewers.
PROFANITY: Well over 60 F-words, well over 30 S-words, 2 GD's, many others. SEX/NUDITY: Brief sexual situations involving nudity. VIOLENCE: Bloody shootings and beatings. DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use. ACTION: One long shootout/gunfight sequence. COMEDY: Limited to an occasional wisecrack.
The above rating is an average of the critic reviews below.
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Review Very Good "It will probably be a long time before another movie
pairs Euro-cinema princess Isabella Rossellini with XXL Latino rapper Fat Joe,
yet that's precisely the personality split that makes Empire so
Review Above Average "Empire comes so close to working that you can
see there from here. It has the right approach and the right opening premise,
but it lacks the zest and it goes for a plot twist instead of trusting the
Review Average "Empire's plot centers on drug dealers and violent
thugs who cheat, kill and put money above all else. Bullets fly in stylized
fashion, accompanied by trite dialogue and heavy-handed moralizing.''
TV Guide OnlineFull
Review Below Average "It's that from LITTLE CAESAR (1931) to PAID IN FULL
(2002), this tale has been told and retold; the races and rackets change, but
the song remains the same.''
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
Sorry, we were unable to collect moviegoer opinions. This movie did not open in a city where we collect opinions.
OPINION OVERVIEW The following is the original "What's Worth
Watching" write-up for this movie.
Sorry, this movie did not open at a theater that allows us to collect moviegoer opinions so no opinions will be available.
Cinema Review Prediction: (before moviegoer opinions are collected)
The target young adult audience expecting violent urban action will be
disappointed by how talk-heavy this drama is. The downbeat and
predictable story--given away virtually in its entirety in the
commercials--won't help. John Leguizamo's strong lead performance could
win over some audiences, however.
Victor Rosa (John
charismatic young Latino gangster holds money above everything and fancies
himself a self-made entrepreneur a la Rockefeller, Carnegie and Gates. But
Victor Rosa's domain is a successful "street pharmaceutical"
business, built around a customized heroin mixture
he has dubbed "Empire."
Victor's beautiful fiancee
Carmen (Delilah Cotto) attends Baruch College,
where she befriends fellow student Trish (Denise
Richards). When Trish introduces Carmen and
Victor to her investment banker boyfriend Jack
(Peter Sarsgaard) at a chic penthouse party, the
two men find they have much in common. And when
Jack offers Victor a piece of his action on the
stock market, Victor immediately sees it as a
ticket out of the violent streets and into the
safe haven of legitimate business, where clean money and a
sophisticated Soho lifestyle await.
But as he tries to buy his way out, Victor finds the old ties
are not so easy to break - and
that the price of going legit is much higher than he ever could have imagined.