“The Warriors” was released theatrically in 1979, however due to an outbreak of violence surrounding the film, mainly perpetrated by various gangs, the film was shelved by many theaters. The film was eventually released in limited theaters, but it fizzled out due to many negative reviews and was relegated to video rental shelves and late night TV showings, where the film found its audience and surged in popularity.
The film follows the Coney Island based gang The Warriors as they navigate their way through the streets of gang ridden 1970s New York. The gang was attending a gang conference in Pelham Bay Park, an area in the Bronx. The conference has been called by Cyrus, leader of the Gramercy Riffs the most powerful gang in New York.
Cyrus had the idea to unite all the gangs of New York to form a dominant gang that no one could overturn. However, during his speech a member of the Rogues assassinates him, but upon noticing a member of the Warriors, blames the assassination on him.
Now the Warriors have to make their way back home with every gang in New York on alert to capture or kill them.
This task is far from easy under the dark of night and with only nine members of the gang fighting against untold members of other gangs. Many of the gangs proudly sport their colors through their jackets or as in the case of the Baseball Furies in full baseball uniforms and face paint.
While “The Warriors” is a film full of grit and atmosphere it is not a violent film and instead captures a seemingly bygone era of New York. It does not hide any blemishes, but is still a fun ride and a great action packed film.
The Warriors come across all varieties of gangs and other trouble along the way. They use their wit as much as they use their brawn to get home safely. There are deaths scattered throughout the film, but none are bloody or over the top, but are still shocking as the character development is great in this film.
The soundtrack is also a real highlight for the movie as it captures the mood of the city at that time and place. It aids in the built up of tension, but also conveys the time period perfectly.
While critics initially panned the film for bad acting and dialogue, many of those critics have since gone back to revisit the film and now garnish it with praise. It has truly become a cult favorite with many and has gone on to inspire comic books and video games of the same name.
“The Warriors” is an absolute must-see film for all fans of action movies or great drama. It is most definitely a film that cannot be duplicated or remade with the same amount of heart as it was in this original release.
Derek Warren is a cult movie fanatic, collector, craft beer enthusiast and all-around nerd. He can be reached via email at [email protected]
Final Verdict: “The Warriors” is a must see film for all fans of ‘70’s filmmaking and those who enjoy quality action without muscle men spouting off one-liners. The film has garnered a cult following simply because it is a well-made film and not because of over the top violence or quirky characters.
Where can I get it?: “The Warriors” is widely available on both DVD and Blu-ray through retailers such as: Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, Target, and Barnes & Noble. It is also currently streaming on: Netflix, Amazon and Google Play.