The Warriors - Director's Cut
The Warriors opened on February 9, 1979 in 670 theaters without advance screenings or a decent promotional campaign and grossed USD $3.5 million on its opening weekend. The following weekend the film was linked to sporadic outbreaks of vandalism and three killings - two in Southern California and one in Boston - involving moviegoers on their way to or from showings. This prompted Paramount to remove advertisements from radio and television completely and display ads in the press were reduced to the film's title, rating and participating theaters. In reaction, 200 theaters across the country added security personnel. Due to safety concerns, theater owners were relieved of their contractual obligations if they did not want to show the film, and Paramount offered to pay costs for additional security and damages due to vandalism.
The Warriors received negative reviews from contemporary critics, (but) 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.
This "director's cut" has nothing to offer in way of additional or re-edited footage. The only updates are the introduction (directly likening the film's narrative to the Anabasis by Xenophon), and, significantly, the comic book panel transitions between scenes.
I'm generally not a fan of retrofit movies, but I consider this, like Blade Runner, to be an improvement. Bear in mind that director Walter Hill wanted to do these transitions when he originally made the movie, but Paramount didn't allow it. So this is what he intended it to be, and it works well with the cinematography, editing, music, everything. It's always been a pop art masterpiece, but now it wears its pulpy, sensationalist allure on its sleeve all the more proudly.