When we come to that point in life when we have to choose a careers, many of us will never expect that this decision might lead into saving the world one day; but destiny and having certain abilities could lead us this direction. Gerry a retired U.N. officer in the film World War Z. will have to take on a journey to the biggest mission of his life. Outlining some of Joseph Campbell’s stages of the mythic hero’s journey in his book Hero with a thousand faces, clearly defines Gerry as a hero.
First, Campbell’s beginning stage of the hero’s journey it’s define as the “call to adventure.” He states, “A blunder-apparently the merest chance-reveals an unsuspected world, and the individual is drawn into a relationship with forces that are not rightly understood. The familiar life horizon has been outgrown; the old concepts, ideals, and emotional patterns no longer fit (51). For Garret, it’s a drastic change on the world full of zombies, riots, death, and without the necessary resources to keep his family safe.
Without knowing what’s causing this, or the slightest idea of how to fight back the zombies, Garry and his family must keep moving. Thierry, his friend and Under-Secretary from the U.N., will send a helicopter to save him and his family at sunrise but they must find a safe extract point. As they are running away, Garry has to fight his way in and out of a store to get his daughter clenbuterol for her asthma, and other essentials for the family. Also, Garry and his family will have to go through an apartment building full of zombies to find a safe place to spend the night; just before sunrise they will have to fight their way up to the roof-top, in order to be picked up by the helicopter.
Second, Campbell presents the next stage as The refusal of the call.” This is related by Campbell as The Myths and folk tales of the whole world make clear that the refusal is essentially a refusal to give up what one takes to be one’s own interest (60). Garry enters this stage after they have been saved and taken to the U.N. Command Ship in the Atlantic Ocean. Thierry takes him for a walk and briefly explains to him what they are dealing with and how it probably started in South Korea, and how they need to go there to possibly find a vaccine for the virus.
Then, the Sargent in charge explains to Garry that he wants him to lead a team to take Dr. Fassbach to South Korea to extract what he needs for the vaccine. Although, the situation speaks for itself, he didn’t care of the catastrophe that was happening in the world, since Garry firmly responded “no, I can’t help you, I can’t leave my family” With this I can conclude that his only interest during this disaster it’s to be near his family, regardless of the surroundings and the help needed from him to create a vaccine.
Lastly, Garry enters a stage named by Campbell as “Crossing the First Threshold”. This stage can be described as “The adventure is always and everywhere a passage beyond the veil of the known into the unknown; the powers that watch at the boundary are dangerous; to deal with them is risky, yet for anyone with competence and courage the danger fades (82).” The unfortunate accident that kills Dr. Fassbach pushes Garry into this stage. Garry gathers information from the South Korean base, and takes off to Israel to try to find an answer.
As Israel gets attack by zombies, Garry notices a few people are ignored by the zombies. This leads to Garry coming up with the hypothesis that zombies do not attack un-healthy humans, and he then takes off towards the World health Organization. After he explains his hypothesis to the Virologists, he must risk everything to walk to the vault in the building replete by zombies. As he reached the vault, his only way out is by injecting himself, and he is not sure if his hypothesis will work or if he is not injecting himself with deadly virus. Garry finds the courage to take a chance with his family memories.
In conclusion, Garry it’s involve in different Departure stages from Campbell’s mythic hero’s journey. Garry reacts to the unknown to save his family, undoubtedly his main concern it’s his family, but he takes off on a journey to save his family and the world. In the film, Garry is not just an ex agent from the U.N., but a remarkable Hero that did everything he could to find.