The Legend of Tarzan
Return to the Planet of the Apes
Classic Elsternwick - Sunday 10 July 2016, 5:00pm
Running time: 109m
Country: United States
Classification: M (Mature themes and violence)
Release date: 07/07/16
Rating: 4.5/10 (ME 2/5, DP 2.5/5)
Lord Greystoke / Tarzan (Alexander Skarsgård) and his wife Lady Greystoke / Jane (Margot Robbie) are lured away from their comfortable life in England to return to the Belgian Congo. Léon Rom (Bond villain Christoph Waltz) has hatched a fiendish plan to trade Tarzan for the diamonds controlled by Chief Mbonga (Djimon Hounsou) and pay Belgium's sizeable debts.
Yet another retelling of the story of the vine-swinging jungle hero, The Legend of Tarzan tries to present a new twist on an old story and almost succeeds. There are sizeable holes in the plot and the script is awkward (Samuel L Jackson deserves much better than the lines he's given here) but it's a fun film that doesn't ever take itself too seriously. The characterisations leave very little to the imagination; the villains are villainous and the heroes heroic, and there's not much more to it than that. Poor Christoph Waltz must be getting tired of always playing the villain. Please give that man a lovely little rom-com with Jennifer Aniston sometime soon.
The special effects and visual design are very good, particularly the CGI animals that feature prominently. It needed a bit more care to elevate it from a simple comic adventure to something more complete, but if you suspend your disbelief and overlook the more obvious flaws The Legend of Tarzan provides a light and mostly enjoyable ride. (ME)