ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Movie Review: The Legend of Tarzan (Spoiler Free)

Updated on July 5, 2016

Spoiler Free and Author's Experience

I do my best to avoid most spoilery content. Trailers give a decent bit away, enough to nearly be able to tell the film in an abstract manner however.

Also, I have a very minimal understanding of the Tarzan mythos. I've seen the Disney flick, and I know they've made other films based on the book series, but I know not how many or what stories. Is this a remake of Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan Lord of the Apes? I have no idea.

Film poster for The Legend of Tarzan
Film poster for The Legend of Tarzan | Source

Initial Impressions

So, I've never been a big fan of Tarzan. I enjoyed the Disney film, especially with the music of Phil Collins, and most notably the barely veiled graphic death of the antagonist. That's not to say I dislike the idea, but a half-naked man of the jungle fighting against aggressive colonialism doesn't hold a lot of charisma for me.

So, the film was fine with me. I'm far from jumping at the chance to see it again, but I didn't regret my time seeing it.

The Plot

If you're familiar with the Disney movie, I'm using that as a jumping off point. Tarzan and Jane have moved back to England and are married (in fact, going as far as having lost one child at some undisclosed point). Tarzan is approached by an American representative who is worried about the Belgium king enslaving the Congo areas. Meanwhile, a Belgium representative is working to procure diamonds from the Congo and needs Tarzan to do it.

The film starts off at a decent pace, setting up events with a couple of nifty notes here and there. When the conflict is actually set (which may take a little while), the film gets better as we join Tarzan, Samuel L. Jackson's character (which is basically Samuel L. Jackson in another role), and various African natives chasing Waltz' character. Seeing the jungle adventures with Jackson's swarmy comments, is fun and entertaining.

However towards the end of the film, I begin to feel the film falling apart. I struggled to find whether or not the film was pushing Tarzan to be an actual mythical force or a very talented human being raised in extraordinary circumstances. I think I'm leaning towards the former, especially given how overly ridiculous the finale becomes. It feels over exaggerated in order to feel more climatic and the pacing and realism hits a snag and falls on its face. I enjoyed the middle meat quite a bit though.

Tarzan('s abs) with gorillas and a native tribe
Tarzan('s abs) with gorillas and a native tribe | Source

The CGI

This might be my own personal preference, but after having watched Disney's The Jungle Book (2016), there were undeniable comparisons to be drawn. Above all it's the heavy use of CGI. The Jungle Book wins here despite the fact that the entire film is CGI aside from the actor portraying Mowgli. In fact, this might have been why there is no visual disconnect in The Jungle Book.

Christoph Waltz playing the main antagonist
Christoph Waltz playing the main antagonist | Source

Rated PG-13

There's some violence (and a fair bit of choking, honestly) but there's little that's deeply unsettling. There's some profanity (as you might guess from Samuel L. Jackson, and then some others) but there are no 'F' bombs. Overall, it's pretty tame for a summer flick.

Closing Thoughts

Going in with little expectation, I was not disappointed. I was hardly inspired either, but as a summer flick (where movies are pushed all the time) I was entertained. Sure, I've got my complaints but for every bad CGI crocodile I got to see Wasimbu's absurdly happy face. Every illogical animal action has Samuel L. Jackson acting like an old, out of shape man in the jungle. It all really balances out.

Also noteworthy, Tarzan's english name is Clayton. This is confusing because the Disney film, but apparently it's his actual name in the original books. The more you know.

Tl;dr

  • Perfectly serviceable summer flick
  • winning performances by the supporting cast
  • sometimes distracting CGI
  • It's a standard film I would recommend you to watch on Redbox if you want a movie night but don't have a strong desire for any particular film.

Margot Robbie (pictured above), Samuel L. Jackson, and Djimon Hounsou all play a supporting role as well
Margot Robbie (pictured above), Samuel L. Jackson, and Djimon Hounsou all play a supporting role as well | Source

Do you still plan on seeing this film?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • rjbatty profile image

      rjbatty 

      2 years ago from Irvine

      You have to read the Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan novels to get a true sense of who Tarzan really is ... or was meant to be. The basic thing that all depictions of Tarzan just ignore is that he was indeed a savage for a good portion of his life. He ate the flesh of Black tribesmen, without compunction. They were all equivalent to having rabbits on a spit. But being of noble (white) birth, Tarzan could also adapt to learning french and english languages and using them both in ultra-polite society. He may have been raised by an unspecified species of hominids (most likely chimpanzees -- still hardly known or understood at the time of writing), but his parents originated from England and thus he could easily switch from being a total savage to a passable Englishman. Tarzan had no lack of skills, and this is indicative of the time in which Burroughs created his character.

    • CYong74 profile image

      Kuan Leong Yong 

      2 years ago from Singapore

      I will still watch this, but with tempered expectations. Thanks for the heads up!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)