The Legend of Tarzan (Blu-ray Review)

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THE FILM

It was only a matter of time before Tarzan got a reboot. After the success of Cinderella and The Jungle BookThe Legend of Tarzan swung into theaters with Swedish actor Alexander Skarsgård in the title role. The film refreshingly skips the origin story and throws us into an established universe where Tarzan is now John Clayton, living a quiet life with his American wife Jane (Margot Robbie, Suicide Squad) in London. Tarzan’s story has become legendary to the public around him; he has basically assumed identity of a celebrity.

 

When an American, George Washington Williams (Samuel L. Jackson, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), approaches John, he tells him that the Congo he once resided in is now in danger. With that news, John, Jane and George depart to the birthplace of Tarzan, where he reunites with an old African tribe he used to be apart of. Things turn awry when Lèon Rom (Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained) arrives to fulfill his bounty with John. When John escapes, Lèon takes Jane hostage to draw him in. With the aid of the tribespeople and George, John once again becomes Tarzan to save his wife and fight back against Lèon.

 

The Legend of Tarzan genuinely surprised me. Knowing little-to-nothing going in, I was expected a carbon-copy remake of the animated Disney film, a la The Jungle Book. The world of Tarzan is deeply established in this one; while it floats over some of his relationships and past, it shows that he has been through a hell of a lot. Certain scenes indicating his past (aside from the flashbacks) include his animal-like bone structure, his reunion with the tribe, and his relationship with the tigers he discovers with Jane and George.

 

There are a lot of high moments in The Legend of Tarzan. Skarsgård does well with what he’s given; he certainly looks the part, and seeing him swinging through the trees and exhibiting his signature roar is definitely a high point. Samuel L. Jackson provides much needed comedic relief throughout. Christoph Waltz never ceases to disappoint with that soothing voice. Margot Robbie is fine, though she isn’t much more than a damsel in distress. It’s an exciting film that doesn’t overstay its welcome.

 

The Legend of Tarzan: 3.5 out of 5

 

SPECIAL FEATURES

TARZAN™ REBORN – Cast and crew reminiscing about the history/lore of the character and the updates they have made to the legend. The cast and crew discuss why they chose the direction they went in.

 
BATTLES AND BARE KNUCKLED BRAWLS – Discusses how the fight scenes were done. Broken up into three separate segments: 1) Tarzan v. Akut, 2) Boma Stampede, 3) Train Ambush.

 
TARZAN™ AND JANE’S UNFAILING LOVE – Cast and crew discuss the romance between Tarzan and Jane.

 
CREATING THE VIRTUAL JUNGLE – The cast and crew discuss the challenges of shooting on location in the African jungles.

 
GABON TO THE BIG SCREEN – All about the rainforests and wildlife in Gabon.

 
STOP IVORY PSA – Talks about protecting endangered elephants and stopping the ivory trade.


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