Stock Monster Symbolism

You wanna make a serious minded monster movie? Well, the result is going to be taken as symbolism, regardless of what you intended.

Here, then, are some of the standard Monsters from Our Monsters Are Different, with notable examples of said symbolism as interpreted.



Zombies (of the Zombie Apocalypse variety)

Zombies (of the Hollywood Voodoo variety)

  • Slavery
  • Again, faceless conformity and loss of identity
  • Fear of being Buried Alive

The Body Snatchers and similar

  • Conformity and infiltration are the watchwords here.
  • Frequently associated with a Red Scare

Giant Monsters

  • Disasters. Either man made (Hedorah, giant robots, mutants) or natural (Rodan), a sort of divine retribution tied to shinto beliefs can also be read into it (Mothra).
  • Anti-military aesops. Almost always military might will fail miserably and just waste everyone's time, and often it's the fault of the military that the Kaiju are there in the first place.

Alien Invaders

  • Human imperialism and war.
    • The original The War of the Worlds novel was largely meant as a critique of the British Empire and imperialism in general.
  • Human reaction to disaster, similar to zombie films in that the people are more of a problem than the invaders. Also an element of all War Of The Worlds adaptations.

Mad Scientist-made Monsters