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Monday, April 03, 2006


With Apologies to Beigey

My good friend Beigey came out for a visit last August from Seattle. My friend Deni came down from Boston and the three of us took a day to go out to Coney Island. We had a fantastic time, riding the Cyclone, hitting the batting cages, walking on the beach, taking in a Cyclones game. I love Coney. Love it.

While we were there, we spotted a mural that depicted cast members from The Warriors. Beigey immediately broke out into a line from the movie and went on to say that he was a fan. I had no comment at the time, because I'd never seen it. Actually, I might have commented, "Oh. I've never seen that."

I remember when it came out. I was a very timid little 8-year old who was relatively sheltered from adult content in movies. For example, my mother made sure to cover my eyes during several scenes in The Jerk. I've seen The Jerk a number of times since college and I can't for the life of me remember what the hell might have been going on on the screen that would have caused her to do that. Anyway, what I remember about when The Warriors came out was that I was scared of it. I think I might have thought that the fierce-looking men depicted in the ads ate children or something.

I remember that there was a lot of controversy and that people were upset by the film's violence. My parents must have had a discussion about it at some point, because I remember at least one of them coming down on the "Well, they're not getting my money for that crap" side of things. So I made it through my childhood and subsequent adolescence without having seen the movie.

A couple months after Beigey's visit, I saw that they'd made a video game out of the movie. The ads were everywhere for awhile. It looked intriguing. So I put the movie on our Netflix queue.

It came last week and I popped it in the DVD player yesterday and took it for a spin. Man, it sucked. I'm sorry, Beigey. This is just my opinion, but I thought it was a big ol' steaming turd.

If you haven't seen the movie, I'll try not to spoil it here. Suffice it to say, it consists mainly of the members of the titular gang running around. Literally. They run here, then they run there. They run from cops, they run to catch trains. Run, run, run. Run, Warriors, run. And then they fight a little bit. Mostly, they fight other gangs. Gangs that looked like they escaped from a really shitty Broadway musical. All of the gangs, you see, sport a distinct look based on their "theme". There's a gang dressed in pinstriped baseball uniforms with faux-KISS makeup on. There's a gang in striped shirts and bib-alls whose leader is on roller-skates, like a malevolent Bay City Roller. I mean, come on, there's a gang dressed as fucking mimes. Mimes! Run for your lives! It's Shields and Yarnell!

So instead of a story, we get running and a little bit of fighting. When I say "a little", I mean it. I watched this and thought, "This was controversially violent?" The climactic show-down with the gang that chased the Warriors all the way from The Bronx to Coney consists of the head Warrior tossing a knife into the arm of the squeaky-voiced Rogue chief. And that's it. Most gang fights, you see, stop when someone gets an owie.

And the acting! Sweet Jesus, the acting! I haven't seen performances like this since the nursing home I worked at did it's all-quadriplegic production of The Fantasticks. I thought, "Wow! It's no wonder James Remar didn't work much between 1979 and 2000. It would take a long time to live down a prolapsed rectum of an acting job like that."

Sometimes, folks, "cult movie" just means "crappy movie that's better if you're really high".

Ah, my friend, you wound me. Wound me, I say!

First of all, how could you talk about the movie and not mention friggin' DJ Lipps? "Hello all you boppers out there...Seems the Warriors have gotten past some minor leauge competition..."

I don't see how a man who has Cliffhanger nearly memorized has any room to talk about a movie lacking in story and acting. If camp is your argument for legitimacy, how can you tell me that The Warriors isn't camp?

The scene between the main bad guy and the candy store clerk? The Gramercy Riff's call back? The scene on the subway with the kids going to prom? The Orphan's resume? For pete's sake, the all female gang is named The Lizzies!

The Warriors is perfectly pitched camp, through and through; and just to prove how unbelievably geeky I am for this damn movie: The story's based on a classic Greek text.

Come to think of it, Warriors has a page dedicated to it on Wikipedia...Where's Cliffhanger's? Oh, here it is.
Touchy subject?
Nah, just an uber-geek about certain things...
For a minute there, I thought you were disparaging "The Wanderers," which is really the best 1970's New York City gang movie.

If you had been talking about "The Wanderers," I woulda had to fuck you all up.

Since "The Warriors" does, in fact, blow, I'll give you a pass. Fuck that beige fuck. But watch your back, son.
Holy crap! Are you talking trash about The Warriors??

I'm going to look away now and pretend I didn't see.
Since "The Warriors" does, in fact, blow, I'll give you a pass. Fuck that beige fuck.

Is that TV's Vinnie Terranova?

Jesus, man, what the fuck happened to you? You know you don't have to be the size of Marlon Brandon to get work, right?

hey, Ken, Kevin Spacey said to say hello just before he lit a cigar with a K-PAX royalty check...
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