top of page
  • Julia Situ

The Zodiac: A movie based on actual events

Prior to my admission at SFU as an undergraduate student and criminology major, I was very intrigued by thrillers and crime-related movies. Eventually, I registered for an introductory criminology course, which was CRIM 103 instructed by Maikee, and it began my passion for delving into the topic of homicide. Specifically, The Zodiac was an exemplar illustration of a particular type of serial killer in the course material. Briefly, this movie is based on an actual real-life event that occurred in the late 1900s, where crime rates were at its peak in the US. Drawing on what I have learned from CRIM 103, serial killers can be characterized into four different categories including visionary, mission-oriented, hedonistic, and power-oriented serial killer. According to Lyon and Welsh (2016), The Zodiac killer was specified as a power-oriented serial killer to the extent that they are motivated by the power and enjoyment derived from exercising an ultimate life or death form of control over another human being. In the movie, the Zodiac killer was portrayed as having a great desire for attention and simultaneously exerts control by mailing encrypted letters and ciphers to law enforcement and social media, the San Francisco Chronicle. According to the San Francisco Chronicle (Fagan, 2020), the Zodiac's ciphers were not solved until 50 years after the initial crimes.


Fagan, K. (2020, Dec 11). Zodiac '340 Cipher' cracked by code experts 51 years after it was sent to the S.F. Chronicle. San Francisco Chronicle.

Lyon D. R., & Welsh A. (2016). The Psychology of Criminal and Violent Behaviour. Oxford. Retrieved from

146 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Post: Blog2 Post
bottom of page