What Becomes a Tarzan Legend Least?

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sans-loincloth

You may well ask why there is a need for a new Tarzan movie.

Of course, if you are under 16 years of age, mentally or emotionally, you must have a new version. It’s called The Legend of Tarzan.

We loved Tarzan Finds a Son in 1939, in black and white, with Johnny Weissmuller and Bomba as his son. We also loved Mike Scott in Tarzan’s Greatest Adventure: the darkest franchise version ever conceived in which the famous Weissmuller yell occurs at the end of the movie when Tarzan has brutally killed the villain. Curtain, demise.

Now the star of True Blood plays Lord Greystoke in London, reluctant to return to the “African Congo,” as the movie calls it. Hmm. We always confused it with the South American Congo.

Alexander Sarsgaard has already proven his mettle by playing a naked vampire on TV. Tarzan in full cargo pants is a mere piece of beefcake.

Anachronisms abound in the film script. Jane is now American and speaks like California surfer girl Annette from A-I’s Beach Party films. And, Tarzan’s helpful nemesis is a black American, played by Samuel L. Jackson, with 21st century lingo. We kept waiting for him to ask Tarzan: ‘What’s in your wallet?’ Yes, Tarzan has pockets.

The story takes place in 1890 when slavery is illegal in Europe and the United States, but Tarzan must stop European and American slavers among his friendly African tribal mates. Hunh?

All this rigamarole seems to have been done already in two dozen other Tarzan franchise movies. Yes, we have been there in countless films and sequels, most done better than this drivel with endless special ineffectiveness.

The director wanted Tarzan to have a lean look that had never been done before. How wrong he was: Jock Mahoney’s Tarzan was in this style in the 1960s.

If historical inaccuracy and odd changes to the original story do not hamper your movie enjoyment, you may be up for a nostalgic trip back to his ape roots for Lord Greystoke. We missed Cheetah.

DAY’s TIME

Tarzan, Lord of the Nutlicks 

The evil Belgian King must procure diamonds to pay the mercenary armies needed to fully exploit the resources of the Congo.

The key is the delivery of Lord Greystoke/Tarzan to his sworn enemy, the African Congo chief of Blood Diamond fame whose son was killed by Tarzan for killing Tarzan’s ape step-mother in a tribal rite of manhood.

Add Samuel L. Jackson to the mix as a post US civil war era anti-slavery undercover spy tasked with stopping the slave trade in Congo who offers to lick ape nuts….all saved in the end by an endless mix and charge of CGI lions, wildebeests and crocs working together at the behest of T-zan, and you have a movie who can’t miss…who green lighted this one?

This movie insults the Rice-Burroughs classic stories and begs…where is Weissmuller when you need him?

The Hollywood casting formula should have worked. Skaarsgard and his female lead (Margot Robbie) are perfect specimens, the evil Congo chief is frightful, and the evil Belgian is animal husbandry’s enemy (Christoph Waltz).

CGI apes vine tree to tree to train swinging, politically correct anti-slavery pro monkey message, but it all fails miserably bad story, bad direction, just bad.

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