From Coney Island to the Bronx, The Warriors is a film that takes the viewer in and around the depths of New York City. Although most New York City-based films center Manhattan in their stories, The Warriors are a gang with Coney Island on their minds, and the story sets out with the crew being framed for murder in the north end of the Bronx.
Those unfamiliar with the layout of New York might need a bit of a recap, but really, the system is actually simpler and more organized than you might expect.
If you look at Manhattan as the middle (which most people do), you can think of the other boroughs of the city as their own sections around it. There are five of them in total. The Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. Above Manhattan is the Bronx (meaning that the further north you go, the further away you get), and at the bottom is Brooklyn, one hop across the water. Queens is connected to Brooklyn, even further out, and Staten Island is an island unto itself (it’s far enough that some people don’t count it as a part of the city).
So, if the Warriors need to get from north Bronx to Coney Island, what the heck does that even mean? Well, for starters, Coney Island is in Brooklyn, but it’s at the very bottom of the borough—it’s a beach, meaning it definitely borders the other end of the water. Even in 2022, that’s a subway ride that’ll run you close to two hours.
So, if the Warriors are from Coney Island, where are the Gramercy Riffs—their rival, most powerful gang in the film—from? Well, the Gramercy Park area of Manhattan. For those who know the city well, this is actually kind of funny, consider how ritzy of an area Gramercy is. The actual park requires you to have a key just to get inside. So, not exactly street gang territory.
Van Courtlandt Park, where the initial midnight summit for the gangs takes place, is located in the Bronx. It’s one of the city’s largest parks, actually, and it features lots of nice trails and nature. Again, it’s a bit of a hike for Manhattan residents and Brooklynites, but a good day trip though.
One of the next locations is the 96th St. and Broadway station, which is technically on the Upper West Side—an area best known for being expensive, and having a lot of young families with strollers. And also old ladies. Again, an interesting choice, but the Uptown parts of the city generally tend to be pretty nice.
Keeping to the west side, Riverside Park is another significant location of the film, which is around the same area as the aforementioned station. However, they also decide to head downtown (finally!) and hit Union Square.
The Union Square area is a relatively popular space, sort of sandwiched between Greenwich Village and the Flatiron/Gramercy area. The rollerskating is pretty on par, too, considering that people love to hang out, skate, and generally mess around in Union Square.
By the end of the film, they reach Coney Island. Given the time period, there didn’t seem to be too much that they wanted to linger on in Brooklyn aside from that. Williamsburg and Bushwick weren’t what they were today, but it still may have been nice to get a little more of Brooklyn.
The Warriors literally takes you all around the city to extremely recognisable locations, and even if you’ve only visited and you don’t live here, it can be a fun watch if you want to spot some familiar places.
Below, see a special Warriors map of New York City.