Zombie 2 Essay

Submitted By Juleann24
Words: 3045
Pages: 13

What do you think of when you hear the words undead or zombie? The words that used to come to mind are death, brains, hordes, walking dead, and flesh eaters to name a few. Now I must add politics into the mix when hearing the words undead and zombie. When adding politics into the world of the undead and zombies it prompts me to pose the question: Are zombies and the way they are portrayed inherently political? This leads to another more general question, Are all zombie movies political in nature? Do the movies always whether the writer or creator intended or not make some kind of statement to the audience that is political in nature? Which leads back to the original statement when I asked what words do you think of when you hear zombie or undead should politics be automatically included? I would like to examine the George Romero series along with a random selection of zombie related movies to see if in fact when involving zombies, there is always a political statement in the movies. Let us look at defining the term politics. First, the definitions of politics according to Merriam-Webster are: The total complex of relations between people living in society, Relations or conduct in a particular area of experience especially as seen or dealt with from a political point of view, The political opinions or sympathies of a person, Political affairs or business; especially: competition between competing interest groups or individuals for power and leadership (Merriam-Webster, 2012). For my purposes here, the definition of politics above will be compared to the zombie movies I have chosen to see if they are political in nature. Which should allow the ability to be able to answer the question are zombie movies inherently political?
When talking about a movie’s message whether it is political or not, the biggest concern is whether the message is implicit or explicit. For a movie to have an explicit message that is a directors or writers conscience decision to include that message in their work. An example of an explicit message in a movie is a documentary that conveys a message to its audience which than asks the viewing audience to either accept and believe the movie’s message or oppose the movie’s message. The other type is an implicit message, this where the director or writer does not make a conscience decision to send a message to the viewing audience. The movie’s message may therefore be up for interpretation from each different viewing audience member. An implicit message is what we have studied thus far in the movies we watched in this class. As you can see from some of our discussions and readings there may be a message that many viewers agree on, I will later discuss some of the implicit messages in two of the George Romero films we watched early in the semester to further strengthen my point. Nevertheless, for now I would like to continue explaining the implicit messages, which are crucial to my earlier questions. The director or writer can control implicit messages but in most cases, the implicit message is up to the viewing audience to create and discern. Leaving the implicit message up to the viewing audience allows the viewing audience to use their personal biases, experiences, and ideologies to decide for themselves what the actual implicit message may or may not be. A definition of both implicit and explicit is, “Explicit meaning is right there on the surface of things—it is the result of what we have been explicitly shown and told onscreen. When we recount a movie’s explicit meanings to someone else, the result can sometimes sound like plot summary. Implicit meaning, by contrast, is more like our traditional notion of meaning; when we attempt to state a movie’s implicit meanings; we are attempting to convey something less obvious, something arguable about it that conveys a “message” or “point” (Barsam, R., & Monahan, D., 2009).” Now, I believe we have a strong foundation for looking at how a zombie movie may