I’m back with another movie favourite. It’s a lesser known flick, but that doesn’t make it any less awesome. Welcome “The Warriors.” This movie came out back in 1979 and showcases a cast of unknown actors.
The basic plot of “The Warriors” is this: The leader of the largest gang hosts a gathering off all the gangs in the Bronx and convinces them it would be better for everyone to come together as one gang. In doing so they would own the city. Someone from one of the gangs shoots the leader and the Warriors are blamed. Chaos erupts when the police bust the gathering and everyone runs to escape. With all the gangs under the belief that the Warriors killed the leader, they are out for blood. The Warriors need to use all their street smarts and wit to get past any gang that tries to take them out before they reach Coney Island. Along the way they pick up a tough chick that wants out of her lifestyle.
I love the casting and I thought it was a very smart choice that they went with unknowns. Each character stands apart from the others and together they make up a believable brotherhood within their gang. There’s the leader, Swan, and the sleaze, Ajax, who together create an interesting dynamic within the gang. The gang member who shot the leader is unforgettable. His look, attitude, and classic “Warriors come out the play” tune cement him into your memory.
Speaking of the shooter, let’s talk about the gangs out to get the Warriors. Each gang they go up against has a unique look. There are the Baseball Furies, with their baseball uniforms, bats, and face makeup, the Orphans, with their pathetic reputation, the Lizzies, the only female gang, and the Punks with their overalls and roller-skates. This decision that make each gang visibly a unit yet separate from the other gangs was such a smart move. Their over the top looks just added a flair that would have be seriously lacking otherwise.
The sound track is perfectly reflective of the events in the movie. The instrumentals have this electronic twang and edge that make chase scenes and high action moments all the more thrilling. The music is recognizable as 70s, but will always be timeless.
I like how the movie centers around the subway system. The only way back from the Bronx to Coney Island is the subway. The Warriors have to deal with multiple interruptions to the train, each time leading them into danger. With their need to always catch the next train, the adrenaline is always pumping.
The other crazy part of this film is that all the events happen in one night! The Warriors just can’t catch a break until the sun finally rises in the morning, and they are home. I highly recommend “The Warriors” to anyone who enjoys a good plot and characters who get their just desserts.