Canby, Vincent. "When A Tame Film Inspires Violence." New York Times 04 May 1979: D19.
The article discusses and considers whether it is possible that a film such as The Warriors could possibly be the cause of 3 deaths that supposedly occurred due to the film’s release. It discusses the advertising campaign as well as the precautions taken by Paramount by supplying additions security guard to theatres showing the film. It is questioned whether “yanking” the film from theatres would have been an appropriate plan of action for the film which was causing headline news regarding association to three deaths. But the notion is quickly dismissed since doing so would be a poor precedent for similar occurrences in the future. The author argues that a better solution would be to handle the potential situation on a local level, having each theatres act responsibly for itself and be prepared for whatever situation could arise. It is next investigated why this particular film would incite such excitement as there are plenty of other films with much more violence than The Warriors. Despite being a genre much used during the World War II era, the “Lost Patrol” film has been reworked for The Warriors in a fashion that leaves all of the members very vulnerable throughout. The author of the article states that he wonders how anyone could possibly get so inflamed over a film filled completely with a mish-mash of clichés and moods. Its feel throughout is not terror, but instead parody. As evidenced by the film's two major fight scenes, they appear choreographed and rehearsed and despite the use of lethal weapons, none of the fighters get killed or even injured badly.
This article attempts to pick apart The Warriors in a manner that would learn what would cause such a vitriolic response. It comes to the conclusion that a film such as The Warriors could not possibly cause such a response because of its heavy reliance on fantasy and parody.
“The Warriors Stirs Up Violent Storm." Globe and Mail [Canada] 02 Mar 1979.
The article discusses the level of violence that The Warriors has as well as the violence focused advertising campaign. It cites two specific occasions where real life violence occurred directly after a viewing of the film. It is discussed how critics connected the violence to the film and the film production company Paramount denies any connection between the events and the film. Despite their denial, they still changed a number of things regarding the film. The advertising campaign was completely modified and reduced to only include the name of the film, the theatres it was playing at and the times it was being shown. Also, free additionally security guards were paid to work at theatres showing the film by Paramount.
This article related to the thesis in the fact that it discusses the events surrounding the release of the film. The gang-film genre is exemplified and magnified very well through The Warriors as it is a very stereotypical gang film in some senses and has the real-life violence surrounding it.
Arnold, Gary. “Two Movie 'Sleepers' That Woke Up Fast; Neighborhood Rumble; 'The Warriors' -- Surly Kids Pack a Box-Office Wallop." Washington Post 18 Mar 1979, Final: H1.
The article discusses in depth the release week of The Warriors. It mentions the advertising campaign used as well as the post-release actions taken by Paramount. Due to the two killing that occurred that week that were associated and linked to the viewing of the film Paramount offered to all theatres, free of charge, additional security guards as a precautionary measure. Also it touches on the fact that after the first (successful) weekend, all conventional advertising for the film was pulled due to the angle taken with the advertising campaign putting the film in a bad light, further associating it with the real life violence that occurred surrounding it. Additionally it discusses other precautions that were taken, including allowing theaters to discontinue showing of the film without penalty. After 2 weeks of successful film showing without violence, the advertising campaign re-expanded to include favorable reviews that had been occurring over the release weeks.
This article reviews another article written for Reuters where Sol Yurick, the author of the book The Warriors is based off of, discusses his opinion of the violence occurring in response to the film’s release. Both he and Paramount deny that the film itself is the cause of the two deaths. Yurick stated that another film out at the same time had much more violence than The Warriors, so the film's violence could not fairly be blamed for the deaths that occurred. Paramount stated that these consequences never occurred to them because they were filming the movie in a style very related to fantasy. It is a well known fact that this film is based off of the Greek myth Xenophon's "Anabasis" thus holding the level of fantasy true. Addionally, the level of choreography in The Warrior’s fight scene is very apparent and holds the film back from the level of realism required for such claims to be valid.
Therefore the film could not have possibly caused the realworld violence that critics had claimed and blamed on The Warriors. It instead, must have been a set of coincidences that were wrongfully associated with a artfully violent film.
"20th Anniversary Of The Movie, "The Warriors"; How It Sparked Controversy When It Was First Released And Why It Revolutionized Action Movies." NPR's Weekend Edition. Scott Simon. NPR, US. 20 Feb 1999.
This transcript from a 1999 NPR Radio show discusses why on the 20th anniversary of The Warriors, it should be remembered. The main reason mentioned is that it was the precursor to a genre of action film. It was the raw, gritty style with an emphasis on character development instead of dialog to push the plot forward. Also it inspired much of the current generation of film directors in their style. It discusses that there is a sort of paranoia derived from the premise of the movie, the fact that 60,000 gang members could take over and run New York City. This notion alone gives the viewers of this movie a strong sense of the power that the masses could have.
The aspects of the genre that this film really influenced includes very choreographed fights and action, a move taken from Bruce Lee type Kung-Fu movies. The way the fight scene was assembled made the members of the Warriors appear to be heroic in a sense.
It is questioned whether The Warriors is actually an anti-gang movie, but this notion is quickly shut down since the movie clearly shows the unified gangs breaking down into individual factions once again.