Colors (1988)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  29 April 1988 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 18,123 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 53 user | 27 critic | 15 from

An experienced cop and his rookie partner patrol the streets of East Los Angeles while trying to keep the gang violence under control.



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Director: Dennis Hopper
Stars: Julie Adams, Daniel Ades, Richmond L. Aguilar


Cast overview, first billed only:
Louisa Gomez
Ron Delaney
Larry Sylvester (as Grand Bush)
Gerardo Mejía ...
High Top
Charles Walker ...
Fred Asparagus ...
Officer Porter


A confident young cop is shown the ropes by a veteran partner in the dangerous gang-controlled barrios of L.A. about to explode in violence in this look at the gang culture enforced by the colors that members wear. Written by Keith Loh <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


70,000 gang members. One million guns. Two cops. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

29 April 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Colores de guerra  »

Box Office


$6,000,000 (estimated)


$46,616,067 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


After working alongside Mickey Rourke on Rumble Fish (1983), Dennis Hopper was so impressed with his abilities that he told Rourke he wanted him as his leading man for his next two directing projects which would have started with Colors (1988) with Rourke in the lead role as Officer Danny McGavin. Although it was informally agreed to by Rourke, when time came for filming, Rourke was immersed in other projects, and so Hopper cast Sean Penn instead. See more »


At the beginning of the movie when Danny and Bob first meet in the police station washroom, there is something in Bob's back pocket that is sticking out in some shots, but disappears in others. See more »


[first lines]
Diaz: Hey Hodges, what do you think about all those hot shot jitter bugs, huh?
Bob Hodges: What about 'em?
Diaz: You never went for this shit, did you?
Bob Hodges: No way.
See more »


References Raw Deal (1986) See more »


Performed by M.C. Shan
Written by M.C. Shan (as Shawn Moltke) & Marley Marl (as Marlon Williams)
Published by Cold Chillin' Music
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc/Cold Chillin' Records Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An intense, powerful movie...
24 November 1999 | by (The Projection Booth) – See all my reviews

Before you had BOYS N THE HOOD or MENACE II SOCIETY, there was COLORS. This movie is the original article in urban-street dramas that spawned many followers in the 90's. But like those films it is an intense, powerful movie that takes you to the streets in an extremely realistic way. The caption on the VHS cover says something like two gangs at war(Bloods & Crips)with the police caught in between. Well, that is pretty misleading. Although most films like this would stick with the gang war as the main focus, COLORS has many different plot levels that all come together very nicely. Sean Penn & Robert Duvall are right on the mark as the two officers on the beat. The film ultimately succeeds through its perspectives, giving points of view from all sides and fully expresses the harsh reality that everyone involved faces. When the film first came out, it was bashed for its extreme violence and portrayal of gang members. Well, I definitely think Dennis Hopper did an excellent job and I feel that violence is crucial in a film like this to add to its strong sense of reality which some people may not be too familiar with.

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