Empire State (2013) Poster

(2013)

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7/10
Worth a watch, about 6.5-7.0 movie
Jacob de Jaeger24 August 2013
When I saw the rating on IMDb it kinda put me off watching this film. Usually anything that rates lower than a 6.0 on here is actually pulp, IMDb works great that way. Pulp is OK every once in a while so I still sometimes watch some of those films if I like the cast or the storyline, however I usually draw the line at anything below 5.0 cause it's mostly just a complete waste of time.

Made an exception for this though after seeing the cast and reading the story outline, I thought how bad can it be, so I decided to find out.

I was pleasantly surprised, at no point was this film hard to watch or boring to me, just an OK thriller like many others that is worth watching even if it's not blowing your mind away. I would say it deserves about the same rating as 'man on a ledge' or 'alphadog' or 'savages'.

Anyway maybe there's some hate in some of these reviews because of some cast members or because it could have been better (it could) or because it sometimes gives you an atmosphere like your watching the departed, however then the film isn't nearly as good or it uses historical cues like argo but it's not as good as that either...all that doesn't take away from my opinion that it's still an interesting story to watch with generally decent acting.

7 out of 10 to boost the rating a bit, would give it more like a 6.5 myself.
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4/10
What time is it, Dwayne?
imdb-773-3466724 August 2013
Suitable for late night television only. Too slow and too boring. Don't pay money to watch this. There's a lot of potential, though. The story is actually quite interesting and the acting is not half bad. However, the potential is never unleashed, unfortunately.

I gave up on this flick when I noticed that Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson was wearing a brand new, present day digital Casio G-Shock watch. He was wearing it throughout the entire movie, although the story is set in the eighties, more than 30 years ago!

This little flaw illustrates the ambitions of both the actor, the crew, the director and also the overall quality of the movie very well, in my opinion.
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4/10
Middling account of real life events. There is a reason this went STD
callanvass11 October 2013
(Credit IMDb) A drama centered on two childhood friends who plan to rob an armored car depository, and the NYPD officer who stands in their way.

I've seen a lot worse when it comes to STD movies, but this just wasn't all that interesting in the whole scheme of things. For a true story, you would think more effort would be necessary. My main problem with Empire State is how bland it is. It doesn't have that much action what so ever, and it lacks the emotional punch needed for a film of this magnitude, and the cast just simply isn't up for the challenge. I garnered no emotional stimulus between Chris (Liam Hemsworth) & Michael Angarano (Eddie) because not only did the film not make me care about their fates, but their performances were rather poor. Liam Hemsworth is not lead material, and made for a very boring lead. He also felt miscast, and forced in the lead role. Michael Angarano isn't much better. He grated my nerves with his wise-ass character, and I felt like smacking that smug look off his face. His chemistry with Hemsworth was off as well. Dwayne Johnson is criminally wasted in this movie as a detective. Whenever he appeared on screen, my interest level was raised significantly, but that was much too seldom for my liking. Dwayne has a gift when it comes to charisma, and the fact that he has such a small role here is incorrigible. He was far too good to have such a small part in this movie. Emma Roberts is barely in this movie, aside from a few pointless scenes. We get scattered clips in the beginning and the end of the real life events that took place, but it didn't matter much to me.

Final Thoughts: A rather mundane account of a true story. I'm not gonna tell you to avoid it, but don't expect riveting entertainment. It's not a very good movie, and it went straight to DVD for a reason.

4/10
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5/10
Uninspired performances in what could have been an interesting thriller
estebangonzalez104 September 2013
"It's been reported that over 9 million dollars were taken in last night's heist."

Empire State surprisingly begins with a lot of promise. The beginning of the film sets the right mood and tone with an incredible 80's vibe bringing out some nostalgic memories. It had the right look and some interesting characters and the story is based on true events of one of the largest heists in American history. I thought I was going to enjoy this criminal thriller, but about half hour into the movie everything began to go downhill. Dwayne Johnson and Emma Roberts who were on the cover of the film are only supporting characters who get very little screen time. You begin to see characters come in and out of the story without any real purpose (Nikki Reed barely has a meaningless cameo in this). The true lead actors in Empire State are Liam Hemsworth and Michael Angarano, and their characters are portrayed in such a light that we are supposed to sympathize with these guys, but that never happens. Director, Dito Montiel (whose previous work include Fighting and The Son of No One both starring Channing Tatum), never manages to engage the audience with the film and it's disappointing because he had some talented actors and a great premise to work with. Overall the ending is probably the weakest and laziest part of the film after having a somewhat interesting buildup. The script was written by Emmy Award winning writer, Adam Mazer (You Don't Know Jack), and this is probably his weakest film. Montiel hasn't had much success in his films, but somehow he always manages to work with a high profile cast; if he doesn't do something different he is going to have a short career as a director.

The film is based on a true story about a heist that took place at Empire State armored truck company. Chris Potamitis (Liam Hemsworth) is a young kid who dreams of becoming a cop in order to help his family out. Unfortunately due to an incident that took place a few years ago with his best friend, Eddie (Michael Angarano), he is rejected by the Police Academy and is denied the test. Chris has to settle for working as a security guard at an armored truck company which doesn't pay much. To make matters worse, his partner is killed at a heist and the company doesn't pay the insurance for his family. Upset by this, Chris decides to steal a small amount of money from the company in order to help them out. He tells his friend Eddie about this and Eddie thinks it's a good idea to steal the millions of dollars that are stacked at this place with little security. Along with some other small time criminals, they plan to take it all, but they have to be careful because NYPD, James Ronsone (Dwayne Johnson) is hot on their trail. They will also have to watch out for the big mafia criminals who wouldn't appreciate a heist taking place in their area without their knowledge. Stealing the money might not be such an easy task as Eddie and Chris believe it to be.

Emma Roberts, Jerry Ferrara, Chris Diamantopoulos, and Michael Rispoli all play very small roles in this film. This is Dwight Johnson's fifth film of 2013 but this is by far his smallest and most forgettable role. Liam Hemsworth doesn't have what it takes to be a lead and so it was very hard to care for these characters and what was going on. The premise was promising, but somehow they couldn't create a decent criminal thriller that would engage the audience. It is a shame because this story could have been told so much better and some of the actors could have been used better. Overall I enjoyed the 80's vibe and the nostalgic feeling the first 30 minutes gave me reminding me of all the films I watched as a kid during that time. The last hour is so messy that it just ruined everything. The characters are completely one dimensional and cardboard copies and the film is completely predictable.
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2/10
One of the worst heist movie
KineticSeoul2 October 2013
This has got to be one of the worst heist movies I have ever seen. Usually I just try to go with the flow since it's just a movie. But the really dumb aspects of this movie just really becomes overbearing after a while. It does start out okay, with some decent acting. It even has a good cast, although only one of them seemed to be actually trying. After viewing it though, it just seemed like a movie where the actors just came together in order to make a few quick bucks. The writer of this movie did a horrendous job, I am not sure if they intentionally decided to make a bad movie for the audiences to roast upon. But I got zero enjoyment out of this and got really boring and slow really really quickly. None of the characters are likable or even interesting. Watching this movie just made me angry, it's not even a okay way to pass the time even if you have nothing to do. Just pass on this one, there are better heist movies out there. Heck there are way better straight to DVD movies out there.

2.5/10
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1/10
You can afford not to watch this movie
Sil24 August 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Empire State is a very bad movie because it is based on a super weak unrealistic script. It may have roots in a true event but so much changed that it has become the biggest travesty.

If you can temporarily completely suspend your disbelief and lower you IQ to 40 or less then maybe you can enjoy it, otherwise the probability is you'll ask yourself if the screenwriter is openly making fun of the audience or God forbid if he is completely retarded.

  • Tens of millions of dollars (probably hundreds of millions of today's money) are kept in an unsecured warehouse guarded by a single untrained unchecked guard.


  • Chris potamitis steals money but apparently money in the warehouse is never checked. Then he goes on a shopping spree with his totally idiotic retarded brother Eddie in a hip club in town, people are wondering how in hell he's got so much money to spend, Eddie clearly says in front of 3 girls that his brother stole the money where he works but of course everybody get away with this.


  • His brother is obviously so retarded that any sane person would never ever have talked about a robbery plan with him.


  • A highly unrealistic robbing takes place at exactly the same day and time as planned by the 2 brothers: what are the odds? Assuming this was possible one can only assume that the robbery was prepared with internal help. The cops have to assume it. The brothers have to assume it. The company has to assume it and all should change their plans accordingly.


  • But nope, the depository does not seem to think it has to increase the guard count and take additional measures even temporarily.


  • Main cop Ransome notices main character when his partner dies. Then during the failed robbery attempt by strangers he sees Chris Potamitis calling someone on the phone but there are no reasons to become highly suspicious right? - Shortly after that the alarm rings again during Chris' watch, and of course nobody is concerned that it is the second time in a row that the alarm rings during Chris watch, that it also was during his watch that a robbery attempt took place and that his partner was shot while touring with Chris. Frankly it is really strange that Chris hasn't been name president & CEO yet.


  • 9 million dollars are taken, there is a huge hole in the ceiling, the robber had to have the code or someone knowing the code had to open the door but no problem, Chris can go home and doesn't spend a second at a precinct.


  • It's the biggest heist in US history but apparently it's not enough to check employee cars trunks. Also, only a genius would hide the money in the trunk of his brother's car trunk right? Because he knows for certain that the least suspicious robbers are employees right? - The cop is in his car, watching the 2 brothers arguing about what is in the car's trunk. He was suspicious enough to follow them but he isn't suspicious enough to run & go see what's in the trunk and confront them.


  • You are a drug dealer. You hear about the heist of the century for 8 million dollars. A few days' later 2 low life losers come and want to purchase for 8 million of drugs. Are you A. suspicious or B. so happy you just go the biggest order in the history of drug dealing? Are you A. Taking the money and congratulating yourself or B. Try to rob they guys that got you 8 mil? - You just did the heist of the century. You A. Keep incriminating drawings in your locker for the fun of it or B. try to be as discreet as possible? - You just did the heist of the century. You A. lay low for a few years or B. think you will be the next big thing in drug dealing and buy drugs? - I could go on and on but you get the drill. Too bad there are decent actors there. If you want to see a decent movie about a true heist go see 11.6. -
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3/10
Good start, awful movie
drHirudo1 September 2013
The movie begins with catching scenes and interesting plot, but then everything goes from bad to worse. Randomly put scenes, boring characters, too *realistic* representation of the 1980-ies and detectives that don't see the clues even if you poke their eyes with the obvious.

There are no action scenes, no comedy scenes, just some boring backgrounds with randomly placed actors talking to each other with much development of the story.

If you have time to lose and want to see the gangster's side of the epoch, watch, else better skip it.
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5/10
Apparently Based on a True Story
Claudio Carvalho12 June 2014
In the 80's, in New York, Chris Potamitis (Liam Hemsworth) had dreamed on joining the police academy but his best friend Eddie (Michael Angarano) destroyed his dreams being caught by the police with marijuana together with him. Chris is hired by the Empire State Company to work as security guard in an armored truck with the driver Tony (Michael Rispoli). When Tony is murdered in a heist and the Empire States does not pay the insurance to the widow, Chris decides to steal money from the depository to give to her. Chris comments with Eddie, who is a lowlife and bigmouth person, the fails in the security system of the Empire State and Eddie plots a scheme with another smalltime criminal to steal the money from the depositary. The FBI agents do not believe that two morons like Eddie and Chris could have planned the heist but the experienced Detective Ransome (Dwayne Johnson) follows his instincts to solve the case.

"Empire State" is movie apparently based on a true story with one of the most unpleasant and irritating characters of the cinema history, the loser Eddie. Consequently the performance of Michael Angarano is top- notch. On the other size, Chris Potamitis is shown as a naive and quite innocent victim of the heist but it is hard to believe in this character. Therefore, despite the good performances, the screenplay is badly written and waste the good cast. My vote is five.

Title (Brazil): Not Available
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4/10
Mediocre.
Girish Gowda11 September 2013
Warning: Spoilers
After failing to get into the police academy, Chris Potamitis (Liam Hemsworth), settles for a security guard job with the Empire State Armored Truck Company. Chris makes the mistake of mentioning the company's lax security to his best friend, Eddie (Michael Angarano), and is soon unwittingly drawn into a scheme to rob the abundant amounts of cash being stored there - resulting in the largest cash heist in U.S. History. As the stakes continue to rise, Chris and Eddie must outwit James Ransone (Dwayne Johnson), the veteran NYPD Detective that is hot on their trail, as well as the local crime bosses that want to know who pulled a job on their turf, or suffer the consequences.

The eighties setting is realistic and it looked like it had so much potential to be a fun or interesting thriller. Based on a shocking real-life incident, Empire State is frustratingly dull, half-baked and mediocre through and through. Dwayne Johnson and Emma Roberts who are on the poster are just glorified cameos. I don't know what they were thinking when they signed up for this. Its all about two simple-minded idiotic guys, Chris (yes, even him for letting his unbalanced friend know about the state of the place) and Eddie and their choices. Liam Hemsworth is miscast and looks like he's barely learnt how to act. He isn't charismatic enough like his real-life brother, Chris (Thor) to take on a lead role. Michael Angarano is the loud-mouthed, stupid, stereotypical best friend who plays it over-the-top and gets annoying quickly, but his was the only character that I was glad to see no matter the annoyance. They shouldn't get the blame though since its the writer and director who let the movie down. The execution is lacking and the movie is full of clichés and mediocrity. They did the right thing by releasing it straight to DVD. Skip it even if you're a fan of Dwayne Johnson or any of the actors.

4/10
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1/10
This movie sucks
horsebungle27 August 2013
In this movie there's a really annoying guy who is kind of like Edward Norton's little brother or something. The only reason you won't abort the movie is because you want to see him die and you keep watching to see "Is he going to die? I hope he dies so I can turn this movie off" Also you hope for the Rock to show up but he doesn't. He has 5ish minutes of screen time and the rest of the time my fists are clenched as I try to literally summon the power of Goku and go super saiyan doing a kamehameha that could destroy the world itself because it would be worth it to end this movie. Liam Hemsworth fans, you can still watch this because the whole movie is just looking at him doing nothing. So either watch this or buy a poster and look at it for hour and a half, same thing. Still this movie was better than Iron Man 3. One star.
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5/10
A barely competent armed blag thriller.
Matt West22 August 2013
Chris Hemsworth is Chris Potamitis, the eldest child of a Greek immigrant family living in America who thirsts for greater purpose in a world of crime, thuggery and greed.

Always at his side is his stereotypically loud-mouthed, crass mate Eddie, who does not understand why Chris would want to aspire to bigger things. Eddie's attitude reflects that of his struggling family who are constantly bogged down in poverty and surrounded by negativity.

As Chris struggles to do good in the world, he finds himself knocked down a peg when his partner is killed during a robbery after he takes a security guard job, and Chris is once again thrust into a world of crime as he tries to make something out of the situation he's in, eventually leading to greater and more dangerous repercussions than he could imagine.

There's lots of potential in Empire State, and all the elements of a good thriller are here. The trailer certainly set the stage for a grand drama. Unfortunately, this film is less than the sum of its parts. All of the necessary ingredients are in the recipe, but they are delivered without any real bang. Set pieces fizzle, and the tired American stereotypes tested my patience. There are twists that will peak your interest and there is some good character development on Hemsworth's behalf, but it all feels rather unambitious. The narrative never takes the time to slow down crucial moments and transitions from scene to scene of fast-talking Latin-Americans. Visually, the 80s have been better depicted in many other films. Some care and passion in the production process would have created a better product.

Worth the price of admission? Hard to say. It's easy to enjoy if you're not too critical, but there are much better offerings both in the genre and from 2013.
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5/10
Fails to execute true events, mildly entertaining with an interesting cast. C+
Pratik Vora22 August 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Empire State is an action-suspense based on a true story based on a robbery taking place in the late 80's. Even though based on true events it misses out on vital information and ends up being close to an entertainment piece. While the mood of the 1980's starts to set in it also lacks to develop an interest to what is going on. This is the result of slacking production. Do not raise your expectations cos of the cast and budget.

(Michael Angarano) was convincing in his role that though it got a bit loud sometimes. (Liam Hemsowrth) just manages to pull off his and finally (Dwayne Johnson) as a cop with hardly any part. He was just the poster boy and probably did it for the money or out of a favor. (Emma Roberts) has been hardly given any screen time.

Dito Montiel falls off short to keep the events in concurrence to the film. At the end we also see the real (Chris Potamitis) in an interview who says the money stolen disappeared but in the film its been said that it was hidden under a statue, a pointless addition of fiction. Hence concluding without true meaning.

I wouldn't be surprised to why an $11 million movie is being released straight to DVD. People wondering why I couldn't catch this up in the theaters will be thankful later.

*NOTE : $2 million of the loot was recovered
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1/10
Slow start, slow middle, boring.
Mommygoggles29 August 2013
Of all movies that the Rock has be in, he's been pretty great. This movie is a different story.

This.... Well, the beginning was a a time warped bore fest. The overall movie was so horribly boring that we had to shut it off about 3/4 through it. Well, we shut it off after we got up to go find something more entertaining to do. We expected better, but the story line drug too much, with no catchy parts to it. Period. I'm not easily bored with a movie, but this was a first.

We thought this would be adventurous, dangerous, catchy. It was none.

Don't waste your money on this movie.
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4/10
Stereotypes & Contrivances So Thick You Could Choke On Them
Larry Silverstein6 September 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I wondered why this film went straight to video and why the reviews were so poor. After viewing it, I wonder no longer. It seemed to me that the filmmakers were intent on manipulating the viewer to a certain perspective, while filling the movie with numerous stereotypes and contrivances. Amazingly, it's supposed to be based on a true story of a huge heist at the office of an armored-car company in New York City, in 1982.

Liam Hemsworth stars as Chris Potamitis who goes to work for Empire New York Securities Incorporated, after being rejected by the NYPD for a minor marijuana violation years before at a Black Sabbath concert. He's a low paid security guard for the armored-car company. Soon after being hired, his on-the-road armored-car partner (Michael Risoli), who may be the world's worst security guard, is shot and killed during a botched robbery outside an OTB parlor.

Chris is demoted to night watchman at the office because he didn't draw his gun during the robbery, despite being shot himself, and only saved by his bullet proof vest. Everything about Empire is shown to be a nightmare. The owners are skimming off the top and don't care at all it seems about how much money is picked up and held at their warehouse. The security is ridiculously bad with an entry code of 1-2-3-4 (Duh!) and a guard dog who's a deaf German Shepherd (I'm not kidding!). The owners have even cheated the widow and daughter of the slain guard out of the bulk of the insurance money.

So when Chris and his long time friend Eddie ( Michael Aragano), a small time hustler in their Greek neighborhood in Queens, begin to conspire to rob the place, I imagine you're supposed to be happy that the company deserves it. Of course, there's other complications like local mobsters and competing thieves who want their shot at the place.

Emma Roberts' talents are wasted here in a small and inconsequential role as a local waitress and friend of Chris'. Dwayne Johnson exhibits strong screen presence, as usual, as Detective Ransone, who is trying to protect the armored-car company. However, the script call for him to be rather flippant like all the other cops and FBI agents, who really don't seem to care about the whole affair.

There's even a brief and ridiculous interview with the real Chris Potamitis, who doesn't seem to want to say anything about anything.

All in all, for a film that's supposed to be based on the largest cash heist in American history, to that point, it sure seems flat, vacuous, and lackluster. I, unfortunately found the same problem with director Dito Montie's recent film "The Son of No One".
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7/10
Where's Chris and where's the money
alex-kirkby20 February 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This film is OK that's it. Dwayne Johnson is my favorite Movie star and when I heard about this film I just had to see it. This film is just one boring thriller with an OK story line security guard helps steal all the money that he is meant to look after then the security guard is arrested by the police, there is no action apart from a 5 minute shoot out scene about half way through the movie then that's it. This is the 3rd Dwayne Johnson movie that I haven't really liked. I can't understand why he did this one but as they say every action star has a through bad films. Plus this film also shows how bad Liam Hemsworth is doing in his films compared to his brother Chris Hemsworth (Thor). This film is not great and it is not bad ever it's worth a watch. In my opinion they could of done so much more with this film and and they could of done better with 2 actors one being a fantastic action/comedy star and the other being a OK actor who has worked on a big block buster film which was The Expendables 2. This film is only worth watching once and I wouldn't buy it when it comes out on DVD. Give it ago as I always say it has Dwayne Johnson in it and is all based on a true story and it is about a robbery of $30 million, it's just a very boring true story but give it a go.
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5/10
It Was Okay
bob-rutzel-112 September 2013
This is based upon a true story.

Chris (Liam Hemsworth) takes a security job with Empire - a security company with armored trucks that went around NYC collecting money from businesses - after being rejected by New York Police Academy. Chris tells his friend Eddie (Michael Angarano) how lax the security is at Empire and he gets involved in one of the biggest heists in New York history.

Eddie is a small time crook and after watching this movie he is also a big time pain in the butt. I don't think I ever saw a character so devoid of common sense and manners until now. So I guess Michael Angarano did a good job of it. Still, that was annoying. One may say if it wasn't for Eddie there would have been no robbery.

Once the robbery is announced the police suspect the Mob families and they (the Mob) want to know who did this on their turf. This could have been dragged out more but it wasn't. Pity, as this could have had some humorous moments.

Here's the thing: The money was never found, and was about $8-million which was half the amount robbed. The other half went to the local drug lord and was confiscated by the police.

The pacing is good. There was good acting all around. You see everything, but still the other half of the money was not found. However, Chris did tell waitress Nancy (Emma Roberts) where the money was, but nothing ever came of it. Or did it? Hmmmm……………….. You will have to draw your own conclusions here as there is nothing left to go on. No one is talking. Well, maybe we didn't see everything.

Dwayne Johnson as Detective Ransome performed well and had his suspicions of who was involved in the heist.(5/10)

Violence: Yes. Sex: No. Nudity: No. Language: Yes, much.
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6/10
With a mixture of annoying characters, Dwayne Johnson's charisma and a poorly done adaption on what seemingly was a real life event, you have Empire State.
Amari-Sali25 August 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I stumbled across this movie and upon seeing Emma Roberts, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Liam Hemsworth, I wondered why have I never heard of this movie? Dwayne Johnson is a big star, Liam Hemsworth is in the friggin' Hunger Games series, and Emma Roberts, well maybe she is a selective taste. Still, why is it with two big names and one young lady whose last name is at least well known, why have I yet to see a trailer or hear any mention of this movie?

Well, let's first explain why by talking about the characters. Hemsworth plays one of the leads, Chris, and Michael Angarano plays his best friend Eddie. Now, Chris and Eddie are New York boys in the 1980s who seemingly are both of Italian descent. Chris himself is Greek, and Eddie's background, I don't believe, was fully detailed. Still Chris is your everyday boy trying to make his dad proud, follow in his footsteps and become a cop, but thanks to deadbeat Eddie, he has a drug charge and is denied by the NYPD. But, he does make the acquaintance of a cop named James Ransome (played by Dwayne Johnson).

The story goes, Chris is a nice young man who made one bad friendship by hanging out with Eddie. The boy can't keep a job and pretty much, you are constantly wondering why Chris is friends with Eddie. But, while Chris' dream of becoming a cop fails, at least, unlike his father, he gets a decent job as a security guard for an armored car company named Empire. Thing is, seemingly the place is ran by shabby businessmen who like to take some off the top. Everyone knows, and no one cares. Chris tells this to Eddie, and then seemingly Eddie tells everyone. This all leads to a series of events which continually make you wonder why the hell is Chris friends with Eddie?

Now, the saving grace to this movie was, for me, Dwayne Johnson. As he is naturally fit to, he plays a cop, and though his charisma is there and intensity, he doesn't have a whole lot of jokes to give us unfortunately. But, when he is involved and guns are being fired and there are shootouts being done, this movie livens up quick and brings your attention right to the screen. Also, I must admit, as shaky as the story was, it had potential to be better.

With that comment though, let us speak on the mess this film is. First off, Michael Angarano makes you hate Eddie so much that you wish he was dead not too long after meeting him and, sadly, he never finds a single moment to redeem himself or even allow us to understand why he is like he is or why Chris is friends with him. Add onto that, both Hemsworth and Angarano make terrible leads. Hemsworth seemingly only has looks and Angarano, maybe it is just the films I've seen him in, but I just don't think of him as someone who should be one of the focuses in a film. To me, he utterly ruins the movie for the way his character is written and portrayed may get a rise out of you, but he never entertains you. He isn't someone you love to hate, but someone you wish wasn't so damn lucky to not get his behind beat and shot to death. And really, be it Angarano or the script, deleting this character and refocusing the film on Chris' family troubles I think could have saved the film from ultimately being mediocre.

Overall: Skip it Even if you are a fan of anyone involved, it isn't worth the frustration or your time. I paused and walked away from this movie multiple times and would have probably not completed it if it wasn't for me already having a few pages of notes. Dwayne Johnson does his best to save this movie, but Michael Angarano's character takes an elephant size crap on the film and Liam Hemsworth just plays a simple guy who doesn't illicit any type of response out of you. With Eddie deleted from this story, seemingly based on true events since it ends with the guy with an old interview with the real Chris Potamitis, I think this movie, if restructured around the hinted financial troubles of Chris' family, could have been decent. But, again, Eddie's involvement only leads you to despise the character, hate yourself for watching the movie, and slightly reminds you why some people, or maybe just me, only know Michael Angarano for dating Kristen Stewart.
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10/10
Empire State is about two childhood friends. Young Chris is trying to get into the NY Police Acadamy, but his friend Eddie always finds a way of screwing up his life.
Salah DaMan Gadelseed22 August 2013
The movie was GREAT. I wasn't entirely sure about Liam Hemsworth playing a Greek character, but boy did he do a good job. Likewise with the guy who played Eddie, Michael Angarano,who I thought at first would have been better if Jerry Ferrara, Jimmy, had played him instead. Casting turned out well though and was pretty well thought out. Acting was, for the most part, spot on. The Rock is still the same 'rock' in terms of acting though. Everything about the movie was great, the gun scenes and the way the heist was pulled off. At times it's very predictable like the Col***** dr** de** scene. I thought it was also pretty smart to start the film at the end,and then work their way from the start. I've got no idea why IMDb has this rated as a 4.5* film, deserves at least a 7.5 or 8.

Overall, a great film, easily re-watchable several times.
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7/10
deserves better rating
bektaskonca22 August 2013
A drama centred on two childhood friends who plan to rob an armoured car depository, and the NYPD officer who stands in their way.

well it is not i really don't get who wrote the inscription on this film, i think they have not seen it. plus Dwayne Johnson on the front of poster is misleading he is not the main actor nor he is in the film more than half hour all together and Emma Roberts is hardly in the movie ??? lets get to the point movie had a script has been done hundred times before saying that is no mean the film was bad because it was well written and executed. acting was very good except Dwayne Johnson he just did not fitted the character and made me feel uneasy it almost felt like he did not want to be there. character development was the best one i seen in years you felt like you was there and felt for this guys. directing, camera work and editing was excellent in this. i can not understand why the rating is so low in this movie, i have been watching movies since 70s and i like this movie and recommended it to any one.
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1/10
So boring - couldn't even finish...
night_godess833 September 2013
I rented this because of the actors names to be totally honest. I watched the trailer and was expecting a heist, action, drama, maybe even a little thriller because of the hint of "mob" potential. It was so bad - I couldn't even finish watching it (turned off at 42 minutes). The best parts were in the trailer, which itself is misleading. I like Dwayne Johnson so I was hoping for action. The action fizzled at best. It was just anti-climactic.

I don't want to give it away in case some one actually wants to watch this but the actors/actresses have so much potential and it just wasn't harnessed. I didn't even realize that was Emma Roberts during the movie until I re-watched the trailer. Ever watch a movie with random scenes that makes you wonder how it adds to the movie? This flick had plenty of those. Was it supposed to add to the character? I couldn't tell if Hemsworth was nice, a pushover or a thug. His constant shift made it difficult to root for or feel sorry for him. I don't know if it was the writing or the directing but words cannot express my disappointment.
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3/10
Boring, Slow, Beyond Belief
elvis3162 January 2014
I couldn't finish it. Not even the Rock could save this one. There are many unbelievable aspects, suspensions of disbelief that must be attained to be able to finish this movie. Unfortunately, or fortunately, I could not complete the task. The most major of all of the flaws that is difficult to overcome is how is his idiot buddy still alive in this world? How would they not have been caught or found out from the start considering his big mouth? And why is this sensible guy still friends with him in the first place is a close second place.

Add two stars for Dwayne Johnson.

It has the feel that it is based on a true story, or supposed to be, it would be interesting to know if it was.
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3/10
Dragging and Miscast
3xHCCH18 March 2014
Set in the Greek Quarter of New York City back in the early 1980s, "Empire State" is about Chris (Liam Hemsworth), a lowly-paid security guard of an armored truck company. He made the unfortunate decision to abet in a robbery on his employer planned by his lowlife friend, Eddie (Michael Angarano).

When they actually pull off what turned out to be the biggest heist in the US history at that time, all the local gangsters, as well as tough NYPD cop Detective Ransome (Dwayne Johnson), breathe down their necks.

For me, all the key roles were miscast. Liam Hemsworth looked too confident and self-conscious to be realistic as a down-and-out impoverished security guard. I was thinking that the scrawny Michael Angarano would have been better off as Chris instead of his supporting role of Eddie. This was especially after we see a clip of the real Chris at the end of the film. Dwayne Johnson looked too "modern" and did not look like he belonged in that time period when the events happened. Emma Roberts had a role as Chris' girlfriend, which was largely inconsequential.

The true-to-life story actually had potential to be a good film, however, the execution of this one left a lot to be desired. The story- telling was slow and boring. There was no dramatic tension where there should have been. There was no feeling of excitement even during the actual heist itself. This looked and felt more like a made-for-TV movie from the 1980s than a current big screen feature.
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6/10
Not an action movie
phd_travel21 September 2013
Even though action types like the Rock and Liam Hemsworth of the Hunger Games are the main stars, don't expect an action movie with thrills and fast paced action. Instead it is a fairly sympathetic dramatization of a real life heist - the largest cash amount in history in 1982.

The two main perpetrators are blue collar friends struggling to make ends meet. The casting of Liam Hemsworth as Chris the security guard is strange. He is a watchable actor but doesn't look Mediterranean as the character is in real life. Michael Angarano is suitably out of control as his impulsive bumbling partner in crime. Emma Roberts plays a waitress friend.

Usually I like true story movies because the plots are stranger than fiction and more convincing. Unfortunately this story isn't terribly interesting. It's all rather straightforward and the characters are rather common loser types. Despite the A list stars it doesn't have that compelling enough of a story or endearing characters for a big screen movie. It was released straight to DVD and you can kind of see why after watching it. Still it's okay for one watch.
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4/10
Good story, bad movie
Imdbidia21 January 2017
I'm a fan of real stories turned into movie when they revolve about an epic robbery and those robbed aren't worth of pity. This seemed to fit the genre. I didn't know what to expect from this, but the Rock is in it, so I thought, at least will be entertaining as he is the quintessential hero.

The film is not dreadful, but it is kinda mediocre. Bad direction, bad production, mediocre acting, poor dialogues, bad tempo, lack of climax, lack of tension, lack of humour, lack of proper drama, lack of everything that makes this sort of movie interesting.

The movie is supposed to happen in the 1980s, but it looks more like the 70s, regarding, dress style, make up, hair, and overall looks. If you don't get something as basic right, how do you pretend us to believe the rest?

The acting is uneven. The Rock underwhelms here, probably because the role doesn't suit his style, and he is not a proper actor, but more an action hero and I am OK when he does those sort of movies. Liam Hemsworth has potential, but he needs a bit of time off and focus on developing himself as an actor, because his lack of dramatic register was painful to watch here and not even the accent was believable; he is miscast here, and the film doesn't make him any favor or push his career forward, quite the contrary. Three people stand out to me in this film: Arangano as the most annoying Eddie, Ben-Victor as the good Chris' father, and Rispoli as the normal-guy Toni. Other supporting actors are OK in their respective roles as not much is expected from them and they are stereotypical baddies.

It is a pity that despite the story being really interesting a priori, this people wasted millions of dollars to produce a B movie. If I had had to pay for this, I would be furious.

If a movie doesn't entertain you, doesn't make you laugh, doesn't move you, doesn't have a decent settings, or the right actors for the characters, well, why bother?
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2/10
Nonsense.
Derek Charette19 March 2015
Warning: Spoilers
This girly man little idiot "Eddie" is perhaps the most ignorant, annoying actor I have ever seen. Certainly anybody that acted like this fool in reality would of been put down many years before. This is a poorly directed, poorly acted, poorly written movie. It is in fact, frustrating to watch. The only reason I kept watching was hopefully I would see a bullet rip through this "Eddie" moron's face. The acting was over the top (in a bad way). Over dramatic acting to say the least, backed by a poorly written script. Seeing as this movie is based on real events, the production came off as something made by incompetent fools. The ingredients for a good movie were in place, but they didn't know what they were doing, and burnt it to a crisp. Given a better production team this movie could of been much better. Don't waste your time, unless for some reason, this is the only movie you are able to watch.
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