The Warriors (film)

1979 action film directed by Walter Hill

The Warriors is a 1979 film set in a period-correct era of New York City, where turf gangs battle the police for rule of the streets. When one gang leader tries to bring all gangs together against the cops, Coney Island's Warriors are framed for his murder and now must fight their way home while every other gang is hunting them down.

Directed by Walter Hill. Written by David Shaber and Walter Hill, based on the 1965 novel by Sol Yurick.
These are the Armies of The Night. They are 60,000 strong. They outnumber the cops three to one. They could run New York City. Tonight they're all out to get the Warriors. taglines


  • It's still on and we're goin'. Cyrus sent an emissary this afternoon to make sure. Now, Cyrus don't want anybody packed and he don't want anybody flexing any muscle. So, I gave him my word that the Warriors would uphold the truce. [pause] Now everybody says that Cyrus is the one and only. I think we better go have a look for ourself.


  • [banging bottles together] Warriors, come out to play-i-ay!
  • [Swan demands a one-on-one fight and he pulls out a gun] One on one? You're crazy. You're dead, all of you, and you know it. You're dead.


  • Masai: [addressing the Gramercy Riffs] Who are the Warriors? [no reply] There must be some word! [no reply] I want them all! I want ALL the Warriors! I want them alive, if possible. If not, wasted! But I want them. Send the word!
  • Mercy: Yeah, that's right, Warriors. Just keep walkin'. Real tough muthas, ain't ya? You guys don't show me much. Why don't you dickheads just walk all the way back home, huh?
  • D.J.: [last lines] Good news, Boppers: The big alert has been called off. It turns out that the early reports were wrong, all wrong. Now for that group out there that had such a hard time getting home, sorry about that. I guess the only thing we can do is play you a song. [the Warriors theme song, "In the City" plays]


Cowboy: You never know what you're gonna run into out there. If we're wearing our colors, we can't hide.
Vermin: Who wants to hide?

Cyrus: [yelling] Can you count, suckers? I say, the future is ours... if you can count!
Gang Members: Go on man! We're with you Cyrus!
Cyrus: Now, look what we have here before us. We got the Saracens sitting next to the Jones Street Boys. We've got the Moonrunners right by the Van Cortlandt Rangers. Nobody is wasting nobody. That... is a miracle. And miracles is the way things ought to be. You're standing right now with nine delegates from 100 gangs. And there's over a hundred more. That's 20,000 hardcore members. Forty-thousand, counting affiliates, and twenty-thousand more, not organized, but ready to fight: 60,000 soldiers! Now, there ain't but 20,000 police in the whole town. Can you dig it?
Gang Members: Yeah.
Cyrus: Can you dig it?
Gang Members: Yeah!
Cyrus: Can you dig it!?
Gang Members: YEAH!
Cyrus: Now, here's the sum total: One gang could run this city! One gang. Nothing would move without us allowing it to happen. We could tax the crime syndicates, the police, because WE got the streets, suckers! Can you dig it?
Gang Members: YEAH! [cheering]
Cyrus: The problem in the past has been the man turning us against one another. We have been unable to see the truth, because we have been fighting for ten square feet of ground, our turf, our little piece of turf. That's crap, brothers! The turf is ours by right, because it's our turn. All we have to do is keep up the general truce. We take over one borough at a time. Secure our territory... secure our turf... because it's all our turf!

Luther: There he is! That's him! That's... the Warrior! He shot Cyrus!
Cleon: Man, you crazy! I din't do nuthin'!
Luther: We saw 'im!
Cropsey: Yeah, that's him.
Luther: He's the one! He's the one! The Warriors did it! [starts charging Cleon] The Warriors did it! The Warriors did it! The Warriors did it!

Cowboy: Okay, what are we gonna do now?
Swan: We're going back.
Vermin: You mind tellin' us how? Fuckin' Coney Island must be 50 to 100 miles from here!
Swan: It's the only choice we got.
Cochise: Yeah, real simple. Except that every cop in this city is lookin' to bust our heads.
Swan: We got somethin' else to think about.
Vermin: Yeah, what?
Snow: The truce. Is it still on?
Vermin: If it ain't, we're gonna have to bop our way back!
Cowboy: Shit, I wish we was packed.
Swan: If this truce is off, anything could hit us between here and that train. If you get separated, make it to the platform at Union Square. That's where we change trains.
Ajax: I only got one question. Who named you leader? I got as much right to take over as you.
Fox: It was Cleon's choice; Swan's war chief.
Ajax: Well, right about now, Cleon's most likely got a nightstick shoved halfway up his ass! [laughs] Shit. I bet you can't even find the subway.
Swan: Maybe we ought to talk about this later, huh?
Ajax: Well, what's wrong with right now? I wanna be Warlord.
Swan: Make your move.
Cowboy: Hey Ajax, lighten up.
Vermin: Hey Big Boy, Swan's war chief.
Cochise: We better stick together.

Cropsey: [Luther just made a phone call and is excited] Well?
Luther: Some two-bit outfit almost got them, but they bopped their way past.
Cropsey: We can meet them at the 96th street station.
Luther: Yeah, platforms probably crawling with cops!
Cropsey: Cops are trying to rack up every gang in this town!
Luther: Yeah, you and me included.
Cropsey: How come you're so happy about this?
Luther: I'm having a good time.

Cropsey: We set?
Luther: We're set alright. Somebody should pick their ass up. The Riffs sent out the word. They want 'em alive. We don't.
Cropsey: Sooner someone grabs 'em, the better.
Luther: What's the matter? Ya afraid the Warriors are gonna shoot their mouths off before they get wacked?
Cropsey: Yeah, right! I'm worried! I just don't want the Riffs down on my head!
Luther: No sweat. They're lookin' for the Warriors, remember? We can do some lookin' too... Oughta make you feel better.
Candy Store Girl: Hey, what about the money you owe?
Luther: FOR WHAT!?!!
[Throws the stolen candy bar on the counter]

Cowboy: [winded, running from the Baseball Furies] I can't make it.
Ajax: Are you sure?
Cowboy: Yes, I'm sure...
Ajax: Well, good! I'm sick of runnin' from these wimps!
[They stop to fight]
Ajax: I'll shove that bat up your ass and turn you into a Popsicle.

Cochise: We gotta hold ourselves together. We got to. See man, if we go to pieces, someone out there is gonna get us.
Rembrandt: [about The Lizzies] They think we shot Cyrus.
Vermin: What are you talking about? I don't get it.
Rembrandt: They think we shot Cyrus. Every gang in the city must be looking for us!
Cochise: Holy shit!
Rembrandt: We're not gonna be able to make it back!
Vermin: We're gonna make it back. We came this far and we're gonna go the rest of the way.

Mercy: See that dude? Over there! He's after you, and he's got some guys with him.
Swan: [looks in their direction] I know they're on my ass, but now they know I know it.

Mercy: [she kisses Swan and is disappointed when she doesn't get a reaction] Come on. What's wrong?
Swan: [coldly] Let's just get to the next station, O.K.?
Mercy: Oh... please, come on... come on.
Swan: You know, you're just part of everything that's happening tonight, and it's all bad. [pause] Just go back to wherever it was you came from.

Mercy: Friday nights are good. Saturday nights are better.
Swan: I bet you can't even remember who you get on Friday and Saturday night... you probably don't remember what they look like...
Mercy: Sometimes I can and sometimes I can't... who gives a damn?

Swan: When we see the ocean, we figure we're home. We're safe.
Luther: This time you got it wrong.
Swan: Why'd you do it? Why'd you waste Cyrus?
Luther: No reason. I just like doing things like that!

Swan: You still looking for us?
Masai: [looks at Luther] We found what we're looking for.
Luther: [cowering] No. No... It wasn't us. It was them. It was the Warriors.
Masai: You Warriors are good. Real good.
Swan: The best.
Masai: The rest is ours.
[Swan nods his head in agreement as the Gramercy Riffs let the Warriors pass]
Luther: [as the Gramercy Riffs descend on the Rogues] Nooooooo!

About The Warriors

  • What made it a success with young people... is that for the first time somebody made a film within Hollywood, big distribution, that took the gang situation and did not present it as a social problem. Presented them as a neutral or positive aspect of their lives. As soon as you said in the old days gang movies it was how do we cure the pestilence and how do we fix the social waste. We want to take these kids, make sure they go to college... This was just a movie that conceptually was different. Accepted the idea of the gang, didn't question it, that was their lives, they functioned within that context. And the social problem wasn't were they going to college, but were they going to survive. It's the great Hawksian dictum, where is the drama? Will he live or die? That's the drama.
  • Hollywood forgives a lot when you have a hit. I don't know what to say about it, other than the fact that it was just a gift in terms of getting it. The studio hated it, and didn't even want to release it. There was a lot of friction with management at the time. Some of it might have been my fault.


  • These are the Armies of The Night. They are 60,000 strong. They outnumber the cops three to one. They could run New York City. Tonight they're all out to get the Warriors.
  • They outnumber the cops three to one.
  • They are 60,000 strong.
  • They could run New York City.
  • Tonight they're all out to get the Warriors.



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