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The Warriors (Director’s Cut) – Review

the warriors blu ray review

Director Walter Hill made a number of cult films in the 1970’s and 80’s and none more so that this classic action adventure The Warriors. Set in a New York City where gangs rule the streets, a popular figure called Cyrus has called a huge meeting of all the gang’s to pave the way for them all to rule the city. But when he is shot by another gang member who then places the blame on The Warriors they have to fight there way back home, knowing that every gang is after them and that the established truce is now off.

Neon-lit streets, great pounding soundtrack and fabulous action sequences made The Warriors the cult classic it is today. Good performances from the then mainly unknown leads, Michael Beck, James Remar and David Harris and especially creepy is David Patrick Kelly as the main villain Luther.

the warriors 1979 lobby card

This director’s cut of the film is good and bad. Extra comic book sequences have been incorporated into the film and it begins with a prologue informing us that what we are about to see is a retelling of classic Greek myth Anabasis, only updated to modern times. There is also an introduction before the film by the director explaining why he chose to update the film in this way. He should not have bothered.

The film was fine in its original form although gladly the inserts are not too many and it makes you wonder why he even bothered in the first place. The good thing about this release is the quality of the transfer. The remastered image is superb and blows the old DVD out of the water. Solid colours and consistent contrast make this a big upgrade. The sound is remix 5.1 but it does the job well, bringing the surrounds in at the right places and giving an overall good immersive experience.

Extras are a good 62-minute retrospective documentary on the making of the film with most of the cast and crew involved.  The only other extra is the trailer. It’s a shame no deleted scenes were included as they are known to exist especially the longer opening sequence.

Overall I would recommend the Blu Ray release even though it is frustrating that the original theatrical version was not included which would have been easy to do with today’s technology. Thankfully the changes made do not spoil the film and are not massive.


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