The Legend of Tarzan
There is so much that could be said about this film. This could be an article critiquing the Great White Savior complex of Tarzan. Trust me there are plenty out there (and most written by white people). This will simply be a review of latest film in the long history of Tarzan on the big screen.
For those not familiar with the story in one shape or form, Tarzan is a character first appearing in the October 1912 issue of All-Story Magazine within the story Tarzan of the Apes. It was written by Edgar Rice Burroughs, who also penned the legendary John Carter series. A popular character Tarzan has been featured in over 200 film and television series. That means he has also caught up with the number of films The Rock & Kevin Hart each have in production right now. That being said growing up as a poor young kid in the sticks the The Tarzan / Lone Ranger / Zorro Adventure Hour holds a special place in my heart because it was available over the air. Respect to Filmation.
Now back to the the review. This film was good, not great. This film takes place about 10 years after Tarzan, portrayed by Alexander Skarsgård, returns to England to reclaim his place as the Lord of Greystroke. This film is not short on storylines. The first storyline that we are introduced to is the rivalry between Tarzan & Djimon Hounsou as Chief Mbonga through the lens of Mbonga wanting Tarzan brought back to Africa so that he can seek revenge, though we aren’t presented with what happened in the past.
This is intertwined with the major storyline about King Leopold II seeking to conquer the Congo. This is actually ripped from headlines like an episode of Law & Order, cue the chung chung sound.
This film even has some buddy comedy with Tarzan teamed up with George Washington Williams played by the legendary Samuel L. Jackson. To many George Washington Williams is a new name to many but someone who should be a prevalent part of African-American history. He was an American Civil War soldier, Christian minister, politician, lawyer, journalist, and writer on African-American history. How do we not know of this guy. Though I was worried at the first moment Jackson hit the screen that it was going to be an 1800’s version of Alligator shucking and jiving. This character does redeem himself as the story goes forward.
Without getting into the details of the rest of story you have multiple animal stampedes. A bunch of fist fights. Some really accurate shooting. You saying you can shoot a man’s ear off with a colt but a cop can’t shoot an offender in the leg? #BLM This is a very typical story. #SPOILER They win.