1990: The Bronx Warriors (1982)

Article #1767 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 1-15-2006
Posting Date: 6-14-2006
Directed by Enzo G. Castellari
Featuring Vic Morrow, Christopher Connelly, Fred Williamson

In the near future (1990, to be exact), an heiress to an armaments empire escapes from Manhattan and hooks up with a gang leader in the Bronx named Trash. However, the powers that be want her back, and send a cop named Hammer into the Bronx to find her and bring her back.

From Sword-and-Sandal movies to James Bond ripoffs to Spaghetti Westerns to movies like these, you can always count on the Italian film industry to find some new action movie paradigm which they can use as a template to produce a huge amount of product with which to flood the market. I got this one as part of a collection of post-apocalyptic movies, but there is no mention of an apocalypse in the storyline. However, there is a certain similarity to movies like THE ROAD WARRIOR here, as well as to ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK and (especially) THE WARRIORS. This movie contains lots of bloody but photogenic violence, a pouty but good-looking hero who (or whose dubber) can’t act his way out of a wet paper bag, a villain who is played by the most familiar name in the cast, a variety of bizarre theme gangs to liven up the proceedings, and a whole slew of strange weaponry. Take out all of the violence and you have the beginning and ending credits. Take out the cussing and you cut the script in half. It all ends with violent free-for-all involving motorcycles, helicopters and flame-thrower wielding horseman that damn near kills off the entire cast. The ending is a little downbeat, with the final moral being that the corporate police state will eventually crush you under its thumb, but until then, you can get a little satisfaction out of taking out its goons. The characters have names like Hammer, Hot Dog, the Ogre, Trash, Golan, Ice, Witch, Hawk, Blade and Leech. The movie also features action-movie and former football star Fred Williamson, whose mustache has so much character it should get a separate credit.

I get the funny feeling that I’m going to end up watching a lot of movies like this…


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