The Warriors

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The Warriors
Directed by Walter Hill

Conflict – Symbolism

Symbolism is a predominant convention used in The Warriors (1979) to show conflict between characters. The symbolism shows conflict between characters through the use of the colour red. The colour red is a (unofficial) globally recognized symbol of many things which include love, anger and teen anxiety. However the use of this colour is used appropriately in context to communicate a specific meaning. Many films that involve such themes like anger/teen anxiety/hatred have used the colour red as a symbol to portray these themes. It is used so that the audience will understand that the characters in The Warriors are experiencing external or internal conflict with characters, situation etc. This technique is quite important to the film as some of the themes used are that of betrayal and anger therefore giving the audience a better understanding of when these conflicts are arising.

At the very beginning of the movie the convention of symbolism is used when Ajax (a member of the Warriors gang) is seen expressing his view on the decision of the Warriors attending a “peace” meeting called by the “one and only” Cyrus. As he is expressing his view his face is washed with a red light as he says “I’ll bet nobody’s even gonna be there.” The red light on Ajax’s face represents the conflict he has with the decision made by Cleon (who is the leader of the Warriors). This indicates to the audience that Ajax doesn’t believe the decision to go to the “peace” meeting is the right one and if he were leader he would’ve elected not to attend. He challenges the leader’s decision of going to the meeting as he has a clash with the leader as he believes he should be leader. The red light on Ajax’s face can also to seen as foreshadowing his inevitable challenge to Swan’s right to be leader after Cleon is “wasted” after Cyrus is shot at the meeting as he believes he has as much as right to be leader as Swan does even though...
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