Tyler Cowen on World War Z

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

I haven’t seen World War Z, but Tyler Cowen has:

I was surprised how serious a movie it is and also by how deeply politically incorrect it is, including on “third rail” issues such as immigration, ethnic conflict, North Korean totalitarianism, American urban decay as exemplified by Newark, gun control, Latino-Black relations, songs of peace, and the Middle East. Here is one (incomplete) discussion of the Middle East angle, from the AP, republished in el-Arabiya (here is a more detailed but less responsible take on the matter, by a sociology professor and Israeli, spoilers throughout).

The movie is set up to show sympathy for the “Spartan” regimes and to have a message which is deeply historically pessimistic and might broadly be called Old School Conservative, informed by the debates on martial virtue from pre-Christian antiquity. But they recut the final segment of the movie and changed the ending altogether, presumably because post-Christian test audiences and film executives didn’t like it. Here is one discussion of the originally planned finale. It sounds good to me. The actual movie as it was released reverts to a Christian ending of sorts. My preferred denouement would have relied on the idea of an asymptomatic carrier or two, go see it and figure out the rest yourself.


  1. T. Greer says:

    The book is superior to the movie. And even more political. Reading it was a lot like seeing Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon or Bourne Identity for the first time. After I saw those movies, I just couldn’t take other action movies seriously. They were that much cooler. (And the other movies tried to keep up — see the difference of the pre-Bourne and post-Bourne James Bond films.) Same thing with World War Z. I could not take another zombie movie or TV show seriously anymore. If zombies were to happen, they would happen like that book.

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