The Warriors (1979) Poster


User Reviews

Review this title
415 Reviews
Sort by:
A short history lesson
PantherMonterey6 November 2004
I was working in a movie theater when The Warriors first came out, and remember well the flick and the hype surrounding it. Here's a few notes to clear up some misconceptions that many other commentors seem to have.

The flick was NOT ever intended to be an accurate portrayal of New York gang life, although there were some realistic elements. At the time it was generally accepted that it took place in the future, although nothing in the movie supports this. At best it can be considered an urban fable that takes place in a sort-of-imaginary world. You know, like Pulp Fiction (you think 90s LA gangsters dressed like that??).

Second, the film itself was not accused of inciting violence. Problem was, it was a VERY popular film with gang members, who would show up in force. Two rival gangs would show up at the same theater, and... you can figure the rest out yourself. One guy was killed on the first weekend the movie was playing in New York; after that, the distributor hired off-duty police for security at every theater across the country that showed the flick. In the small-town Midwest where I lived, this served more as advertising hype than anything else.

Finally, it was widely known back in the day that The Warriors was based on the ancient Greek nonfiction tale Anabasis, written around 370 BC by the Spartan general Xenophon (it's also published under the title The Persian Expedition). In this classic tale, a battalion of 10,000 Spartan mercenaries join the Persian emperor Cyrus for a war in Asia Minor (i.e. Turkey). Cyrus's army is defeated, the Spartan leaders are captured, and the remaining force must make their way across country, fighting various hostile tribes along the way, experiencing their own internal power struggles, until they reach the safety of the sea. I'm shocked that only one reviewer seemed to be familiar with this; in the 70s almost nobody talked about the movie without mentioning it.

Great flick, by the way, and it holds up extremely well over time. I'm sure the remake will suck.
398 out of 464 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Patrick Kelly, the best soft-spoken killer since Andy Robinson in "Dirty Harry."
Nazi_Fighter_David19 October 2003
Warning: Spoilers
A gang called the 'Warriors,' exhibits qualities characteristic of classical heroes: gallantry, self-pride, loyalty, discipline, and most of all, the ability to fight...

It is night in New York city... Nine leather-vested members of this small bunch, board a subway leaving their Coney Island turf and travel to Van Cortland Park in The Bronx...

The 'Warriors' are only one of many in New York street gangs who have sent representatives to a unification meeting called by Cyrus (Roger Hill), the lord of the largest and most powerful gang in the city, the Gramercy Riffs—a black gang all in their silk pajamas and Kung Fu shirts...

Cyrus speaks to the huge gathering, explaining that all the gangs must unite, that together they outnumber the police three to one, that together they can consolidate forces and rule the city...

There is wild cheering... And suddenly, out of no where, a mean, small-minded person pulls his gun and shoots to kill...

The cowardly little guy of the Rogues quickly yells out that is was Cleon (Dorsey Wright), the Warriors' chief, who killed the legendary leader...

In the confusion, and while the police crowds into the park and the congregated gangs flee, Cleon 'get busted' by those who think he murdered Cyrus...

Without their leader, the Warriors 'got to stick together, and fight-to-survive.' They attempt to make the long hazardous journey to Coney Island hunted by every gang and cop...

Swan (Michael Beck), the cool headed 'war chief,' assumes command... Of his followers only Ajax (James Remar) gives him trouble...

Their perilous journey home is filled with considerable amount of risks as they face violent encounters with different gangs in many shapes and colors...

'The Warriors' is a film that will make most viewers cringe at times, but you'll forgive the shortcomings and praise the exciting camera-work, the excellent use of music, and the good performance of David Patrick Kelly, the best soft-spoken killer since Andy Robinson in "Dirty Harry."

The great moment in the movie is when Patrick Kelly, clicking together three soda bottles, coaxes the Warriors out of hiding by whining over and over, "Warriors, come out and play!"
76 out of 91 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
bsinc20 December 2002
Wow, I haven't been this amazed in a very long time. Where was I living all this time that not once did I hear anything about this movie. "The Warriors" is one of the best moves of the 70's and it definitely deserves more recognition than it apparently has. There isn't a single thing in this movie that disappoints, on the contrary, everything in it is brilliant. The acting, the very cool costumes, the amazing photography, the great adrenaline music, the fight sequences, the minimalistic plot, and of course the memorable one liners. From the moment it starts "The Warriors" just never loses its fast pace and we're not able to rest until the end. There are very few movies I wish would have last longer, there are even fewer that ended perfectly and "The Warriors" is one of them. If people though "Taxi Driver" was controversial they probably didn't see this movie. Cop bashing, interracial skinhead gangs, pretty girls that put out on every other corner; man, I'm not the least bit surprised that people wanted to imitate the Warriors. I felt like it today and I thought I was past that faze. All the praise to Walter Hill for helping make one of the best movies I've ever seen. The photography, that can only be surpassed by individuals the kinds of Kubrick and the shere minimalism of just about everything, even the deserted streets of New York, have never been more powerful. This is cult at its best. 9/10
140 out of 175 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Let's Get Down To It Boppers...
beezer_of_geordies26 November 2002
Just a couple of points to add to the general accolades above:

Here in England the BBC have twice shown a version of The Warriors with a prologue scene, edited from the released movie but restored to a point prior to the opening 'Wonder Wheel' shot. It shows Cleon (an otherwise very underused character), sitting on the Boardwalk in the late afternoon sunshine waiting for his eight footsoldiers to show, while his girlfriend pleads with him not to go to the Bronx. When the others arrive and line up he designates their roles, including the "Swan: War chief and second in command" alluded to later in the movie. Ajax gives an early sign of his belligerent nature, voicing his disapproval with bringing a boombox-guy and a graffiti-artist: "They'll only slow us down", but seems happy to be labelled as "Heavy Muscle" along with Cochise. Much of the dialogue from this scene is re-used in the credit-sequence, with the shots of Coney and the gathering forces intercut with short interchange between Warriors. However, the prologue scene ends unforgettably with a crane-shot of the nine striding up the Boardwalk and into the distance, casting long shadows on the decking and with Cleon's girlfriend trailing in their wake. Over this, a slow sixties surf-tune booms out as the waves wash against the shore. Bloody wonderful.

Unfortunately I have never found a store-bought version which includes this material - DVD community, do you know?

Another thing I heard was that the original idea was that the movie was set "Sometime In The Near Future", but Walter Hill dropped the idea of having a caption stating as much at the start of the film. This explains some of the discrepancies with the actual New York gangland, being more about delinquent youth and 'Colours' than Organised Crime syndicates and shiny suits.

Third - a fantastic action movie full of colour, vim and attitude, but which also never fails to break my heart every time I watch it. There are a couple of scenes like this - mostly Deborah Van Valkenburgh's - but the main one is with Swan and Mercy on the Subway as the High School 'Preppies' complete with ruffled shirts and massive lapels sit down opposite, their laughter and smiles soon fading as the contrast becomes blindingly obvious to them as well as us. Walter Hill plays this scene perfectly: with no dialogue as such, and with Swan and Mercy not even looking at each other as he takes her hand from her hair and places it firmly by her side. Och, goosebumps even thinking about it!

Finally, having also read the original 'Anabasis' (I had to) when I was studying Ancient Civilisations of the Med at University, as a piece of pure drama The Warriors could shove a bat up it's ass and turn it into a Popsicle. Can You Dig It?!
138 out of 176 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Back in time
lou35031 October 2005
I just finished watching The Warriors again and it always brings me back to that time. A time where you relied on friends and a brotherhood to keep you safe. A time where we took care of our own. I was born in Brooklyn and I remember going to the theater in Williamsburg with my older cousin to see this movie. Back then they had double features. We stayed and watched The Warriors for the second time. To me it is a simple movie of survival against all odds with no one but your brothers watching your back. Even the crime syndicate had rat's snitching on each other back then. Look at the end of the movie and see how the Rouges reacted even when faced with their destiny. They all stuck together. This is by far one of the best films of that era. And still today on DVD it is as fresh as the day it was released. I even turned my best friends wife into a fan. I truly believe this movie can reach all types of people. Kudos to the writers and producers and actors and everyone involved in this film.
35 out of 41 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
the original version vs director's cut
meansween-13 January 2006
I am a massive fan of the original warriors, but hated the directors cut. The comic book wipes from scene to scene seemed to cheapen the whole film. Though the director may have been originally aiming for a more 'fantastic' (for lack of a better word) feel, surely he must realise that the way the movie turned out, with a certain gritty and yet, feel good style, is the way it is meant to be. Slapping a few cartoons here and there instead of a simple wipe doesn't make for a radically different movie, just a spoiled one. And why would the original film, a classic and masterpiece, be discontinued once the new edition is released? there are future and even current generations who may not get a chance to see the original now. If the original DVD edition is going to be discontinued, why can't it be included in the new edition, we all know that it is possible (see alien special edition) am i the only one who has this opinion?
37 out of 44 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Walter Hill's stylish 'Warriors' packs a punch
Michael Pilkington11 September 2004
During a gang summit in the Bronx, a rival gang leader (Roger Hill) is shot and killed. A Coney Island gang is wrongfully accused of the crime and find themselves on the run from other gangs and cops as they race back to their turf. Will they make it back in one piece?

Walter Hill's ("48 Hrs.") stylish tale about gang warfare packs a punch (even by today's standards). Upon release, the film sparked controversy and was accused of encouraging gang violence. After one look, it's not brutal, graphic or unpleasant. It's an exciting, fast-paced, action-packed, non-bloody tale that sends a message with conviction. Most of the gangs portrayed are too cartoonish to be menacing, but yet they are unique in more ways than one. Credit should also be given to Andrew Laszlo's photography. A cult classic. "Can you dig it?"

My evaluation: *** out of ****.
43 out of 52 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The best of the Best..
Tantive714 October 2001
Walter Hill shows his directing flair again for action, drama and style in this crackling 1979 movie about a Coney Island gang falsely accused of murder and fleeing from everyone....including the other NYC gangs and the New York City Police Department. Set amongst a hostile, nocturnal world of neon lit train stations, baseball bat wielding gang members and lethal women "The Warriors" moves along at a frantic pace with a fine selection of young actors taking the lead. Michael Beck plays the cool headed, "war chief" Swan, seeking to get the other members back home to Coney Island alive and in one piece. James Remar is unforgettable as the woman chasing, hot headed Ajax...always out to prove his manhood with his fists. And David Patrick Kelly is perfect as the murderous, but ultimately cowardly leader of the Rogues. Attending a combined gangs meeting deep in the South Bronx to hear the Gramercy Riffs plans to control the streets of New York, the Warriors are wrongly accused of the shooting death of their charismatic leader, Cyrus. The finger of blame pointed their way, they flee via any means they can and upon their way back to home base encounter violent opposition from the Orphans, the Turnbull AC's, the Baseball Furies and even rifts within their own ranks lead to trouble. A colorful, exciting and fast paced the time of it's original release it drew criticism for allegedly encouraging gang activity, but now seems almost cartoon like in it's displays of violence.Hands down a great film,stands the test of time. 1 million stars
155 out of 203 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
"The Lizzies Are Packing"
ashleyallinson8 February 2005
"Listen boppers", this is a great gang flick that has a small crew chased down by every gang in NYC after they are wrongly accused of killing Cyrus (the local crime boss) at the Bronx Zoo. The Warriors have to make it from the Upper Bronx to Coney Island with every gang in town trying their own unique ways of knocking them off. Baseball mimes, Roller Skating posses, chick gangs, and of course, the "Riffs" do their darnedest to knock off the resilient Coney Island gang before they can make it back to their stomping ground. A local radio announcer (the woman from "Where in the World is Carmen San Deigo?") narrates their progress downtown, tipping off rivals and setting up further confrontation. A great movies for all ages.
54 out of 71 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Be lookin' good warriors.... all the way back to Coney...
srobi2804 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of my favorite movies of all time. A gang from Coney Island called The Warriors travels to the Bronx for a big gang meeting. Only 9 members of every gang are allowed to attend the meeting, unarmed. Over a hundred gangs show up. The leader of the biggest gang (the Riffs), a guy named Cyrus, plans on uniting all the gangs in the city. His plan is cut short by a bullet when a gang member named Luther shoots him. He quickly blames it on the Warriors, who then have to flee the scene along with the other gangs. Not knowing whether the truce is still on, the Warriors head back to Coney. Along the way, they soon discover that every gang in the city thinks they shot Cyrus, and everyone is after them. They have to make it past the crazy Turnbull ACs, the wimpy Orphans, the menacing Baseball Furies, the charming, all-female crew the Lizzies, the Punks, and finally Luther himself, all while constantly dodging police.

The Warriors is a masterpiece that is simply ahead of it's time. The tense atmosphere of the movie makes for a great viewing. The gangs are comic-book like, the fight scenes are the most realistic I have ever seen in any movie, and it contains tons of catchy lines. It is not a realistic portrayal of gang life in the 70s, and it isn't supposed to be. The whole movie is surreal. It isn't totally believable, but it isn't impossible, and I like that. The casting couldn't be better. And the characters are most memorable. Ajax, the big muscle-head; Swan, the leader; Luther, the insane villain who shot Cyrus for no reason because "he likes doing things like that"; Rembrandt, the new blood; the baseball furies; Mercy, the annoying big-mouthed whore; etc. And to top it all off, the music goes incredibly well with the movie. Very memorable, very exciting, and very worth the viewing. What? You're still here? Go watch it!
14 out of 16 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
20,000 hardcore members
WillDaBeeste28 February 2005
The Warriors may be a camp conceptual ballet choreographer's vision of street life, but it still rocks the bells. The names, the music, the design, the simple story (and don't forget those jackets) are flick knife sharp. Why don't gangs this uber kuhl exist anymore? Because they never did, or can't you remember that, old maaaan?

On the train journey home, contrast the affluent optimism of the young couples, laughing with flowers after the big show, with the filthy, bedraggled and hopeless ghetto pride of Swan and his desperate squeeze. Only one side of the carriage looks embarrassed, and it ain't the Warriors, baby.

Makes me wanna rumble in slo-mo on roller skates.
107 out of 151 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
I'll shove that bat up your ass and turn you into a Popsicle
movieman_kev8 October 2005
The Warriors, headed by Swan (Michael Beck), framed for killing Cyrus, a gang leader that would've united all of them, have to get home to Coney Island while all the rival gangs are gunning for them in this slightly surreal, slightly futuristic classic. All of the actors were brilliantly casted and well acted, not the least being David Patrick Kelly as highly memorable villain, Luther (Waahhrriioors come out to pllllllaahhhhyyyaaaa, is all I have to say). The new Director's cut which adds a prologue text crawl that ties it more firmly to an ancient Greek tale, as well as comic book wipes that transitions some scenes, may dumb it down a tad and spell it out for the audience too unsubtly, but it does NOT diminish from the overall greatness of the movie in the least. The superb director/ writer Walter Hill has made some all-time classics with "48 Hrs.", "The Getaway", "the Driver", Red Heat", among others. ALL of them much loved by me and to say that this film is hands down the best of all is quite a compliment indeed. Followed by a video game based on it by Rockstar that looks simply amazing and a planned remake that will in no way even hope to be as half as good as the original (It won't even have the great Baseball Furies, I mean, come on now!!)

My Grade: A+

Director's Cut DVD Extras: An Introduction Walter Hill; A little over an hour long documentary cut into 4 featurettes (The Beginning: From Novel To Screen, The Battleground: Casting the Warriors, The Way Home: Making The Warriors, and The Phenomenon: Releasing the Warriors); Theatrical trailer; Video Game Trailer; and Trailers for "P Diddy's Bad Boys of Comedy", "Airplane: Don't Call me Shirley Edition", "Hustle & Flow", "Macgyver", "George Lopez: Why you crying?", & "the Godfather"
52 out of 71 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
A Coney gang accused of murder is pursued by violent urban tribes through N.Y.
ma-cortes7 February 2010
The gangs of New York reunite in Riverside Drive Park, there a leader is murdered and the Warriors (Michael Beck, James Remar,Wright, Brian Tyler, among others) are accused of crime (Roger Hill). When they attempt to make their way home are pursued by all weird bands in rare dress as the Baseball Furies, Punks, Lizzies and several others. While a gang's female (Deborah Van Valkenburgh) is recruited and falling in love with the leader (Michael Beck). They must return Coney Island throughout a surrealist city transformed into a phantasmagoric labyrinth full of urban tribes and finally confronting a nasty gang leader (David Patrick Kelly).

This exciting picture packs noisy action, thrills, tension ,suspense, fights and lots of comic book style violence. It's a dangerous trip of heroic dimensions , as it's said that turns out to be a special version from ¨Anabasis¨ by Xenophon or ¨Back the ten thousand¨, a known epic Greek. Filming completely on New York locations at night with superb photography by Andrew Laszlo. Screeching and stirring musical score in the 70s style by Barry De Vorzon. Lavishly produced by Joel Silver , Lawrence Gordon, Frank Marshall, three future successful producers. The motion picture is stunningly directed by Walter Hill who subsequently achieved several hits such as ¨Hard times¨, ¨The driver¨, ¨Streets of fire¨, ¨Long riders¨, ¨Crossroads¨ and ¨Red Heat¨, among them. The flick will appeal to action movies fans and Walter Hill enthusiasts. Rating : Better than average. Well worth watching.
6 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
a classic in it's own right
xfuneralofheartsx10 December 2006
I'll admit the first time I saw this, I didn't see what the big deal was. I thought parts were dragged out, unneeded, and didn't make any sense. I decided to give it a second chance, and it instantly became one of my favorite movies.

The Warriors tells the tale of a "futuristic" New York City, in which, it seems, everyone is either associated with a gang, a cop, or just in the way. The Riffs, the largest gang in the city, calls for a meeting, consisting of 9 representatives from each gang, and each member to be unarmed. During this meeting, Cyrus, the leader of the Riffs, tells his plan of a unified gang which would run the city and outnumber the cops. During his speech, Luther, a member of the Rogues, shoots Cyrus after sneaking a gun into the meeting. Questions arise as to who did it, which the finger being pointed at the Warriors. From here on out, the Warriors are on their own as they must travel from the Bronx to Coney Island by any means necessary, traveling by train and by foot, through other gang territory.

Now a days, the violence in the movie may not effect some, but seeing as how it was made in 1979, I can see where the controversy comes from. As the movie goes on, you will start cheering for the Warriors and anticipating what will happen next. The use of (then) unknown actors helps you get into the story a little bit more, as you realize these could be everyday people and not big-name, big-budget Hollywood actors.

Looking back, I realized how much the meeting was an allegory for the Martin Luther King Jr. "I have a dream" speech. From the vision of a unified group to the assassination and even after wards, when the Warriors are saying what a great man and leader Cyrus would have been.

If you enjoy the movie, or want to understand it more, I highly recommend the Warriors video game, produced by Rockstar. It runs (almost) alongside the movie, but also provides a steady back story or how the Warriors was started and how each member came to be. An added bonus of the game is some of the major actors return to provide voices for their characters, such as Swan, Ajax and Cleon. It is also interesting to see (if you watch the movie before playing the game), how well the clips from the movie translate into the game. Many of the key scenes look like they are taken straight from the movie, like the meeting and the introduction of all of the Warriors in the beginning.

Again, I highly recommend this movie for anyone who likes cult movies, as this is a major one. Even if you don't like cult movies, I recommend it for the strong messages it sends.
6 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Girls Love Guy-movies Too!
EpsteinsMother28 August 2003
I love this movie! I turned five years old in September of 1979 and I can barely remember seeing this movie (family members ran a drive-in at the time). I had forgotten about it when, probably about eight or nine years ago, I'm sitting around the house late at night, bored, and looking for something to watch. The T.V. Guide described this movie as "Walter Hill's surreal vision of street gangs." Well, having a bit of an arty side I was attracted to the word "surreal" and descided to watch it. It wasn't until the fight with the overalls-wearing gang in the restroom that I realized that I had seen this movie before--it was that scene that had stood out to me as a very young child. I just think this movie is very well made, something that could have only been made in the late 1970s (one era of time I wish I could remember better than I actually do). Many people trash this movie, saying it's not realistic and that the characters and costumes are cheesy--but these folks are disliking this movie for some of the aspects that make it great, aspects which I believe were deliberate on the part of the filmmakers. I'm sorry that Marcelino Sánchez (Rembrant--I think I may be the only person who likes his character) and Lynne Thigpen (Radio DJ) are not longer alive. At least Ms. Thigpen lived long enough to probably see this film become a cult classic; but Sanchez probably never realized this, dying so young in 1986. I have to say that at the time I rediscovered this film, what really drew me in was that very handsome Swan (Michael Beck). He was 30 when he made this movie, and probably one of the best-looking men I've ever seen in film. James Remar (Ajax)is not bad-looking, either. But now... now I have to say that Luther (David Patrick Kelly) steals my heart. Soooo psycho!!! Just screaming-at-the-top-of-his-lungs-bouncing-off-the-walls psycho! How I love Willem Dafoe... Michael Wincott... David Patrick Kelly... Ahhhhh, psycho guys are so hot...
9 out of 10 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Entertaining, stylish, energetic and not without soul
Dandy_Desmond17 August 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Its seems the trend now days with indie directors and some mainstream to imitate movies of this kind. Movies with stylish direction, big performances and killer lines that are endlessly quotable.

I feel some reviews that are negative towards it misunderstand it completely. I've read that its 'silly' and the acting is amateurish. First of all of course it is silly, just look at the outfits of some of the gangs, plain ridiculous but Walter Hill and the makers know that this is not supposed to be reality, its a video game or comic book movie and in the end a damn fine entertaining one at that.

I don't see any problem with the acting to be fair and I must say Deborah Van Valkenberg steals your heart by the end. Her character Mercy starts off a trashy, mouthy and easy piece of ass that ditches her current gang the Orphans cos maybe she is looking for some 'real action' so tags onto the Warriors. However as the movie develops, she shows a vulnerable side that she is going nowhere - stuck in a rut, looking for a way out or a better life.

The scene when the two young couples get on the subway with their posh clothes and bright smiles and laughter, until they notice Mercy and Swan sat with cuts and bruises, the camera pans to Mercy's dirty feet - she goes to straighten her hair and Swan stops her showing his growing caring for her. Its just brilliant, further emphasising that this is more than just a cult fighting film.

None more than the final few reels and the song which includes the lyrics 'somewhere out on that horizon, out beyond the neon lights, I know there must be something better'... etc does the film develop its soul and I believe what makes it genuinely great.

For me it has action, good characters, a great soundtrack and an ending that makes me want to weep as the few that survive the night walk along the shoreline.

Would you join me for a weep? give it a watch!
5 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Warriors, you are the best
dusan-225 August 2010
One of the best action movies ever made. With IQ over 20 you will find the IMDb rating ridiculous. Many copycats have followed the steps of Walter Hill since 1979 and none even got close to Warriors. Camera, plot, movie rhythm with constant intensity + great soundtrack, everything we haven't seen for last 30 years. Film had become a cult before many generations of today IMDb users were born and most of the people therefore are not aware of the idolatry that this film spread around young generations round the world at that time. At the time when movie posters were still hanging on the doors and walls of the teenager's rooms Warriors were regular choreography. It would be such a shame that some wise guy ruins this epic movie by making its remake.
5 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The gangs of New York
paul2001sw-130 May 2010
New York City is at its grimiest in Walter Hill's 1970s film, 'The Warriors'; but the film is more entertainment than social commentary. In fact, it feels more like the set-up for a computer game than a movie. A number of implausibly mixed-race youth gangs gather in the Bronx to hear a proposal from the leader one of them that they should unify; the gangs are also strangely clean in a certain sense, interesting in clothes, women and fighting but apparently not involved in drug-dealing or other serious crime. Anyway, someone shoots the leader and a gang from Coney Island are (wrongly) suspected; they have travel home by subway right across the city at night, with the resident gang of each neighbourhood they pass through out to stop them from doing so. A lot of this film is frankly ridiculous; yet it is a great B-movie premise, and director Walter Hill was an expert at this sort of tough no-nonsense nonsense. It's certainly not 'The Wire'; but it is surprisingly fun, even from a distance of 30 years.
5 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
I regret waiting so long to see it. A true Cult-Classic!
Joshua Warren22 January 2010
I regret waiting so long to see it. I mean this movie is great, no wonder they call it a cult-classic. And you know I prefer them, they have more of a realistic feel to them. And low-budget film usually have one director who has complete creative freedom, something that makes the movie exactly what it was supposed to be from the start.

The movie is in a sense of the word an odyssey. A street gang called the warriors get's framed for the murder of an important gang leader in the street gang community. And they're far from home. They meet opposing gangs on the way. Meet some new friends, makes some enemies and loose someone on the way. It's simple but it's exiting. And the fact that this movie, unlike todays movies, are character based and don't loose itself into the dilemma. The dilemma is important, but it's not the heart of the story, the characters in the dilemma is.

I'm gonna keep this review short. if you like retro films, cult-classics, or simply good films, and you haven't seen this film. What are you waiting for, see this immediately! You won't regret it. I give this movie a 10/10. It never disappoints and you never loose interest. Also the Directors-cut is highly recommended.
5 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Your just part of what's happening tonight, and it's all bad!
sol28 July 2004
****SPOILERS**** "Nine guys no weapons" thats the word going around on the mean streets of New York City about the conditions for the big gang pow-wow up in the Bronx that "The Warriors" a Coney Island street gang took the subway from their home base in Southern Brooklyn to attend.

Cyrus, Roger Hill, the leader of the city's biggest street gang "The Riffs" will be the main speaker laying out the strategy for the gangs of New York eventual take over of the city. Telling the thousands of gang members assembled at the Bronx's Van Cortlandt Park that if they unite and stop fighting with each other they can become the most powerful force in the city, five times bigger that the NYC police department, an urban army that will have the "Big Apple" and everything in it just for the taking.

Before Cyrus can finish his speech a shot rings out from the crowd and he falls to the ground dead. Unjustly accused by the real killer of Cyrus of murdering him "The Warriors" are on the run for the entire film from the upper reaches of the Bronx to their home in Coney Island, the longest trek on the NYC subway. By the time that they make it back in the morning they'll not only be exonerated of Cyrus' murder but will earn the respect and admiration of all the gangs that were out to capture or kill them that horrifying night. But "The Warriors" paid a heavy price in their run for freedom they lost three men, Cleon Fox & Ajax, Dorsey Wright Thomas G. Walters & James Remar.

One of the best movies ever about survival on the streets of New York City or any other big urban metropolis for that matter with a heart thumping run-for-your-life by the gang from Coney Island through the streets and on the subways of New York while being attacked on all sides by murderous street gangs and police alike. The gangs who got the word from the Riffs high command to waste "The Warriors" for the death of their leader Cyrus make "The Warriors" long journey back to Brooklyn like a journey through the bowels of hell itself.

The movie "The Warriors" is more like a movie about a group of soldiers then that of an urban street gang who's trapped behind enemy lines, and being attacked by the enemy forces from all sides, as they try to make it safely back to their home base in Coney Island fighting for their lives every step of the way. There are a number of penetrating and individual stories among those involved.

There's Swan, Michael Beck,who took over the leadership of "The Warriors" when their leader Cleon was wasted at the beginning of the film. Cool sure of himself and intelligent Swan guided the battered group back home under conditions as deadly as any a group of fighters would face in a real war zone.

There's Ajax, James Remer, who's macho attitude as well as his big stud image of himself got the best of him when he was hand cuffed to a park bench and clobbered by the police when he tried to "make it", against the advice of his fellow "Warriors", with an undercover policewoman.

There's Rembrandt, Marcellino Sanchez, "The Warrior" artist or marker who saved his fellow gang members from the girl gang "The Lizzies" when he realized that they were setting him and his fellow "Warriors" up for the kill.

And there was Mercy, Deborah Van Valkenburgh, who hitched on with "The Warriors" after inciting the gang "The Orphans" on them. We soon begin to see, like Swan did, that her yarning for violence and excitement was a cover for the loveless and hopeless life that she led. By the end of the movie with the sun rising over the sands and ocean of Coney Island and "The Warriors" back home vindicated and free from gang attacks they come to realize after that night of horrors that thy just lived through things will only get better because the worst that they could have ever imagined to have happened was now behind them.

Powerful movie that has reached cult status since it's release back in 1979 and justifiably so; the movie "The Warriors" is defiantly a WINNER.
8 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Kinetic Cult Classic
tieman647 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Ah, the 70s, the decade when a genre director like Walter Hill could turn a film like "The Warriors" into some kind of adrenaline fuelled comic book masterpiece. Release this film in any other decade and it would be torn to shreds. But the 70s? No way man. In the 70s, hacks made great films, and even crappy films oozed a kind of electric immediacy.

Of course it's important to remember that we had all kinds of factors affecting American cinema in the 60s and 70s. Vietnam, various feminist and civil rights movements, the invigorating influences of the British, French and Italian new waves, Watergate, the pill, hippies, drugs, the dismantling of the Empires, the documentary boom, the sexual revolution etc etc. People believed they could change things. That films could set people free. There was hope, man!

Of course, disillusionment then set in. By the 80s, Ashby would turn to drugs, Coppola would take up a career in sucking, Kubrick would take increasingly long hiatuses, Lumet and Altman would be relegated to adapting stage plays, Kurosawa would be recovering from a suicide and Antonioni, Bergman and Fellini might as well have been dead, Woody Allen churning out some Fellini/Bergman pastiche once a English. Who needs them?

So it was back to business. Back to wish-fulfilment cinema, only now films like "Godfather" and "Jaws" had led to violence becoming the ultimate cinematic cumshot. Elsewhere set-piece cinema was the norm, continuous titillation the raison d'etre of most films, whilst modern gadgetry led to a vampiric obsession with "remaking" or "correcting" narratives of the past with "new" techno-wizardry.

By the time the 80s ended, guys like Spielberg, Lucas and Zemeckis had six of the ten top grossing films of the decade, blockbusters were drawing in previously unheard of sums of money, advertising levels had soared and global blanket releases were pushing more and more films off screens. In the early 90s indie markets began to spring up, but by the end of that decade indie festivals like Sundance would likewise be homogenized and Hollywoodized, the cinematic revolution once again moving elsewhere, this time to the Middle East and Asia.

And so we wax nostalgically about the 70s, that oddball age of American cinema when the social cocktail was such that a guy like Walter Hill could turn a wacky plot into some kind of kinetic masterpiece.

Set in the near future, "The Warriors" revolves around a street gang who find themselves stuck in the Bronx as they try desperately to get back to their home turf in Coney Island. The problem is, every gang in the city is out to get them, not to mention the cops. Sounds juvenile? It is. But the film nevertheless oozes ambiance. Shot on location and almost entirely at night, Hill and cinematographer Andrew Laszlo create a world of dark shadows, fluorescent bulbs, rain slick streets and moody nightmare. Elsewhere Hill uses careful compositions to evoke comic book panels and the splash designs of graphic novels. These panels are emphasised in the DVD director's cut of the film, much to the anger of the film's fans. But these changes are essential in undercutting or highlighting the film's juvenile appeal, Hill recognising that "The Warriors" essentially plays out like an adolescent fantasy in which wannabe tough guys roam the streets at night without parental supervision, doing as they please.

Unsurprisingly, the film was based on "Anabasis" by Greek writer Xenophon. Both aim to resonate on a mythical level, both striped down hymns to bloodshed and bravery. In Hill's case he charters the gang's Spartanesque battle from the Bronx to Coney Island, the director ratcheting up the tension at every opportunity. Of course the majority of Hill's films are Western's in disguise, and so here he likewise tries to have every line of dialogue, every shot, boom with a kind of mythic weight. But what's interesting is that literally every line in this film fails completely, none of the actors (all of whom seem amateurish or camp) able to project themselves into that archetypal space...and yet the film still works. I've never seen a film have every line of dialogue ring this false, and yet, due to the bare-bones nature of its plot, parred down dialogue, script and compositions, still resonate on the level of legend.

When "Warriors" was first released, people initially linked it to such "urban violence" movies as "Death Wish" and "Dirty Harry", or such nostalgic gang movies as "The Wanderers" and "The Lords of Flatbush". But in reality "The Warriors", which was released in 1979, ends the 70s by mirroring the existential road movies that began the decade (Two Lane Blacktop, Vanishing Point, Easy Rider, Electric Glide in Blue etc). And so it begins with men emerging from a dark tunnel and then watches as they battle their way from ugly urbanism to idyllic beaches, gazing to infinity whilst the lyrics "Somewhere out on that horizon, out beyond them neon lights, I know there must be something better, but there's no where else in sight" booming on the soundtrack. Rather than salivating over urban violence, or fighting, the film's central metaphor is "running", is "flight" rather than "fight", our gang members finding no value in what is being fought over, the inner city a cesspit in which its wide eyed dreamers hope to escape, just like the drug fuelled hippies of "Vanishing Point" and "Easy Rider". Today, this kind of dreamy existentialism is a now banalized facet of modern noir, our heroes all hoping to escape to some non-existent fantasy land on the horizon.

8.5/10 - Worth two viewings.
6 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Not as good as the original....
frankie-654 November 2005
The problem with this new DVD version is Walter Hill's insistence on re-editing the film into a comic book story, complete with comic strip scene changes ala sin city and other such nonsense that totally removes the edge and strength of the original theatrical edit. This is a film with an action packed, adult themed feel that requires a sharp, hard delivery the way it was originally.It almost seems as if he did this edit out of some weird ambition to keep up with the new video game's look, or to capitalize on the whole Spiderman/Batman/sin city style of movie making that is so popular now, which I think is a grave mistake. The warriors as it was first released in the theaters and on video and initially on DVD is the version you really want-it contains all the drama, intensity and new york sleaze this movie shows to perfection. I give it seven stars because the movie is great, but this new version is pretty much a waste of your time-just get the first DVD release-it really is much better.
23 out of 36 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Warriors is coming out to play. Can you dig that?
ironhorse_iv16 April 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Warriors! Warriors! Can you come out and play. As a kid, I use to love this movie, and now when I'm an adult, I have a different opinion. It's doesn't hold up as much. Based on Sol Yurick's 1965 novel of the same name. The movie starts out with two different scenes depending on which version, you watch. If you are watching the original, it's starts out with original daytime Coney Island Boardwalk opening with the Warriors gang, War Chief Cleon (Dorsey Wright) talking to his girlfriend about attending the big meeting of all the big gangs in New York City at The Bronx which is a horrible way to start a movie. If you are watching the Director's Cut; the film opens with night with Cleon telling a group of nine gang members about why they are going there. Cyrus (Roger Hill), the leader of the Riffs who wants to united all the gangs into one. Director Walter Hill use the Director's Cut to bring back the comic book origins from a novel by inserting actual comic book-style panels as scene transitions, complete with dialogue balloons and "Meanwhile.." tags. It only kinda works, as Hill destroyed numerous legendary scenes by inserting awkward zooms, awkward cuts at pivotal moments, and freezes and transitions into stylized pseudo-comic book panels. The effect of this also completely destroy the pace and feel of one of the best, stylized, urban thrillers ever to be unleashed on an unsuspecting public. He shattered the mystery of the ambient Wonder Wheel opening by inserting an absolutely unnecessary animate reference to Anabasis before it. While, the film is supposedly loosely based on the work of Greek historian Xenophon. The Warriors has nothing to do with that novel. Walter Hill did considered Orson Welles as a narrator for the movie. I think that wouldn't help the film if he did end up getting Welles. Anyways after the opening, when the group get to the Bronx, somebody killed Cyrus and framed the murder of them. Now the group of nine, must made their way back to their own turf: Coney Island while all the gangs looking for them. While, I like the original, I have to say that The Director Cut's opening is more effective beginning at night. Throughout that night, the Warriors meet some interesting looking gangs. Sadly, none of them look menacing or a threat to the Warriors. They all look a bit over the top or silly. The Baseball Furies was off the wall. Dressed in New York Yankee baseball outfits and with multi-colored face-paint, the Furies don't speak and silently chase after The Warriors armed with baseball bats. It's just looks like a bunch of Mr. Mets mascots or WWE Abe "Knuckleball" Schwartz trying to attack them. Surprising, they are also based on a real life gang called Second Base who wore Lettermen jackets in the 1970s. Then there are the Lizzies are an all-female gang who seduce the gang so easily. I have to say that the Warriors are just dumb horn dogs to fall for it so quickly. I think the creators name them Lizzies, since it's somewhat sounds close to lezzies. I think that was what they were trying to say with that gang. Another awful gang are the Punks. Honestly, if they went with people normally think of punks, it would be OK. But in here, the punks are wearing brightly colored outfits with dungarees like real life Chucky Dolls. Like the Baseball Furies, this gang doesn't speak and they just sit or stand and stare at their opponents. The leader of the gang wears roller skates and is armed with a flick knife. Wow, how sinister. Not! The Rogues are not as well and they are the arch-rivals of the Warriors. From Hell's Kitchen in Manhattan, The Rogues are led by Luther (David Patrick Kelly) the crazy guy who shot Cyrus just because he "likes doing things like that" and then frames The Warriors. Just go with it. They look like a gay BDSM erotic group. The Riffs are the biggest gang in the city and were led by Cyrus until he was shot by Luther are black martial artists who is hunting the Warriors as well. While the movie takes a comic book attempt, I just wish they made the gangs more realism. It's weird in a way that the film did have some real life gangs in the film in the Riverside Park scene like the Homicides and Mongrels. I think film shouldn't allow real life gangs in any fiction movie as it might seem that they are glorified real life crime. Still, I do dig the fiction gang Electric Eliminators bright electric yellow bomber jackets. I didn't like the crew of the Warriors too much as well. Ajax (James Remar) was just unlikeable. Complaining, calling his fellow gang members 'the f-word' and his unhealthy appetite for women. Another character, I couldn't stand was Mercy (Deborah Van Valkenburgh) like the Warriors said, is trouble. She get the Warriors nearly killed, but the Warriors new Warlord Swan (Michael Beck) allow her to tag along. What the hell? I wouldn't allow her to tag along with any reason. I do like the DJ character (Lynne Thigpen). Only seeing her lips in the movie, the gangs of New York listen to the radio DJ to get updates on the whereabouts of The Warriors to assist with the city-wide hunt to find them. I don't like what the Director's cut does to the ending. That single change is so wretchedly disgraceful that it defies belief. Don't get me wrong, I do like the movie. I like the action scenes, and I do like the soundtrack. It's still an interesting movie. I'm just think the movie is a bit overrated. Still, check it out if you can. I still dig it.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
A great film,
Jody Mac31 July 2010
This is one of my all-time favorite films. As a young kid everything about it was just.... cool. Id love to see a re-make of it. Maybe not really a purpose driven re-make, but along them lines. And for the record id have to say Ajax was my favorite Warrior, and its a tie between the Furies and the Turnble A.C's as my favorite gang. Oh how i do love this movie. I've heard some comment about scenes at the beginning of the movie thats not on the DVD version. Its true, and even still the television version and VHS version are different as well. I've got em all.I look back at the corny catch phrases and clothes, gestures that were so cool back then and i cant help but laugh,Im not laughing at the film, only that time changes everything. I cant remember exactly how old i was when i first saw it,but i do remember that it was on RCA disc. Im not sure how many people remember those HUGE discs or how many even know what they were. i stated Im probably one of the biggest fans of this film, and would love to see a re-make type deal or perhaps even a spin off worth watching.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Warriors Come out to Play
Greatornot14 July 2010
This film was just an underrated winner. Simple enough plot and very suspenseful. Basically, It is a film about a gang trying to make it home to Coney Island in the midst of the New York City darkness. After being framed for the murder of the GODFATHER of the gangs,at an informal gathering of relevant NYC gangs ; The Warriors are in for a rude awakening, an adventure above and below the city, trying to make it 25 miles or so. With a bounty on their heads , so to speak, every gang is after The Warriors. This is an adventure, with lots of action and some wonderful catch phrases along the way. The late Lynn Thigpen as the DJ/narrator through out the film was awesome, as well as some great music , featuring Joe Walsh. Look for a young Mercedes Ruehl adding to this mostly non-descript, but well acted cast. In short this is a film of inspiration and adrenaline. A roller coaster ride through out, but well worth the time invested to see this film , without having to make the trip to 6 Flags. A movie mostly under the radar, but well above expectations.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews