The Legend Of Tarzan is the kind of movie that if video stores or cable actually still created second lives for movies, would get a second life. It reminds me of The Rocketeer in a really visceral way. It’s unapologeticly serious with a concept that’s at it’s heart, kind of silly.
The plot (such as it is) has John Clayton III, Lord of Greystoke, formerly known as Tarzan, drawn back to Africa, by anti slave activist George Washington Williams, specifically the Belgian Congo in 1890, to expose King Leopold’s reliance on the slave trade. Of course, bad guy Leon Rom, actually has a plan to catch and trade Tarzan to a rival tribe for diamond mining rights. Also Jane gets caught up in the crossfire.
Much like Fury Road, the movie benefits from having a literal line to follow, Tarzan is trying to catch up with Rom, who is holding Jane hostage. So it’s an adventure. (It’s also not as good as Fury Road, but then again, nothing really is.) There are a few hazy flashbacks in case anyone doesn’t know Tarzan’s deal, (ship wrecked aristocratic parents, dead parents, raised by apes, found by pretty girl, goes on adventures) and they actually manage to both play down and play up the more outrageous elements of this story.
What makes the movie work at all is the precision of the casting. Margot Robbie proves why she’s the new It Girl with her spunky and determined Jane. Alexander Skaarsgard simply is tarzan, from his long flowing hair to his perfect intense brood. Christoph Waltz adds another creepy smiling bad guy to his ever growing arsenal. (The man is so so so good at this. Thank you Quentin Tarantino.) And of course Samuel L. Jackson does an excellent job as George Washington Williams, a part that sort of stands in for the modern audience, basically just shaking his head in disbelief at what’s going on around him.
Also I kept waiting for him to call someone a motherfucker. But he never did.
I also like how the movie was rooted in Tarzan and Jane’s relationship. Not their courtship, they’ve been married for years, but they’re not bored with each other, (though Jane hates England.) they love each other, and that love is physical and visceral.
- The Nice Guys
- Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
- Captain America: Civil War
- X-Men: Apocalypse
- The Legend Of Tarzan
- Finding Dory
- Independence Day: Resurgence
- Alice Through The Looking Glass
The Light Between The Oceans: God, I would watch Michael Fassbender do anything, but this is a period piece where he and Alicia Vikander find a baby and raise her as their own and if that’s not a Reenie movie, I don’t know what is.
Jason Bourne: OMG WE GET IT. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this trailer before EVER SINGLE MOVIE this summer. I kind of can’t wait for it to come out so the trailer can just go away already.
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them: I’m really excited about it. I know it’s probably not going to be the BEST THING EVER, but I’m just happy to be back in The Wizarding World for a little while.
Ghostbusters: WHO YOU GONNA CALL??? Seriously, though, I’m going to be in at rehearsal/in Atlanta for family stuff opening weekend so I NEED PEOPLE TO BUY TICKETS AND SUPPORT IT FOR ME. I’ll be going to see it Monday night.