Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Movie Of The Day: The Warriors

A midnight movie staple from my high school years. We knew it was cheesy even back then--a gang on roller skates?--but all the ass-kicking made up for it. To this day I still sometimes say, "Warriors.... come out and play-ayyyyyy!" People over 35 get it, everyone else just looks at me with that same "WTF?" look I get when I mention things like The Hudson Brothers or Far Out Space Nuts or "I beg your pardon, I never promised you a rose garden." I really need to update my cultural references.

The cast:

Lead Warrior Michael Beck was in Xanadu two years after this.

James Remar has been in lots of things, notably Dexter and Sex And The City.

Deborah van Valkenburgh was in Too Close For Comfort and, recently, The Event.

David Patrick Kelly was in Twin Peaks and turns up frequently in Law & Order episodes.

A more recent pic of Michael Beck and Deborah van Valkenburgh.

I read somewhere that a remake is in the works. Pass.

The original trailer:

The classic scene, which, as you will see in the trivia below, was improvised.

Warriors trivia from IMDb. I can't vouch for its accuracy.

- There were always crowds of spectators during filming, even at 3am in the freezing cold.

- The Homicides were a real Coney Island gang, and they didn't approve of fictional gangs wearing colors on their turf. The wardrobe department made sure nobody walked off location wearing The Warriors colors.

- Crew members were sent death threats because local gangs weren't cast. Thousands of dollars worth of equipment were damaged when one gang tore through the set during a lunch break.

- The Baseball Furies were created due to director Walter Hill's love of baseball and the music group Kiss. All of them were over 30 years old.

- The crew once got urinated upon from a tower block due to the noise they were creating in the night.

- The film trucks were "protected" by a real gang called The Mongrels for $500 a day.

- David Patrick Kelly improvised Luther's "come out to play-ay" taunt, basing it on an intimidating neighbor of his.

- Robert De Niro was asked to be Cowboy, but he passed. Tony Danza was offered the lead, but he chose to film the television series Taxi instead.
(Nah, not buying it. -C)

- President Ronald Reagan was a fan of the film, even calling the film's lead actor, Michael Beck, to tell him he had screened it at Camp David and enjoyed it.

- Ajax's line, "I'll shove that bat up your ass and turn you into a Popsicle" is ranked #12 on UGO's Top 50 Tough Guy Lines, and on the top 50 Greatest Baseball Lines Ever.


  1. I've never seen this movie. That second clip gave me the heebie-jeebies! HA!

    Your mention of the Hudson Brothers took me way back, though. I used to watch their show all the time. Rod Hull and his emu, "Hey, Margolis!" and that song they used to sing before one of their regular sketches with lyrics something like "Funny, funny people living funny, funny lives" all just zipped through my brain.

    The Hudson Brothers were in a traveling production of Godspell that came to Columbus. My sister and I went to see it, and we even went backstage afterwards and got their autographs. haha! Good times!

  2. Mugshot of the day--"Your ad here." Ahahahahaha! Oh golly! :-D

  3. It's like Mad Max, A Clockwork Orange, The Tribe and The Lord of the Flies had an orgy and produced this movie

  4. Thanks for reminding me to add this to my movie list to watch. I've been wanting to re-watch this since my only memory of this movie as a kid was watching it on my 13 inch B&W tv in my room.

  5. You're welcome. It's dated but I think you will enjoy it anyway.

  6. This was like the late-seventies Odyssey, as archetypes travel through a not-at-all-realistic world. It's actually a great movie, remakeable except that no one could carry off the bottle-clinking scene except that little twerp from Twin Peaks.

    Deborah van Valkenburgh, though - what were they thinking? Even when they had her in a thin t-shirt with no bra, sweating and running and in peril basically all the time, she still was about as sexually appealing as a dead birch tree with the face of a catfish. Yug.

  7. Every time I hear In The City by The Eagles I think of this movie. I listen to 97.1 The River, so I hear it a lot!!

  8. Oh yeah, I forgot that song was in this movie. At the end, right?

    I also just remembered the lady DJ who taunted them over the airwaves, Tokyo Rose-style. Because all the gangs in NYC listen to the same radio station, of course. We only saw her mouth.

    None of the gangs they faced were very scary. The one bunch had baseball bats, yes, but wearing makeup and Yankees pinstripes isn't gonna intimidate anyone, fellas, especially if you fight like A-Rod.

    And one gang was mimes on roller skates. I think the Little Rascals could take them. Just snap their suspenders until they roll away in tears.

  9. I distinctly remember seeing much of this movie on TV once while I was maybe 13 and drunk on Everclear at some strange house with a 10pm curfew. I made it home, but my buddy (who was staying with me for the night and many nights) got sick from playing quarters with Everclear punch. Go figure. I think my parents bought the story that he'd been feeling somewhat ill all night. I take that back. They probably worried about me. Sorry, folks. Anyway, Warriors was on TV that night. It was odd.



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