In The Legend of Tarzan, Tarzan leads a stampede of jungle beasts through a port and rescues the Congo from exploitation.
Okay, so The Legend of Tarzan takes some massive liberties, but the movie has the word “legend” in its title. Everything about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Lord of the Apes is steeped in legend. Have you ever tried swinging from vines? Harder than it looks.
In The Legend of Tarzan, evil Belgian Rom (Christoph Waltz) promises a powerful African warlord (Djimon Hounsou) John Clayton’s head in exchange for empire- saving diamonds. Rom lures John (Alexander Skarsgård) to the Congo under false pretenses. John’s feisty wife Jane (Margot Robbie) and American ambassador George Washington Williams (Samuel L. Jackson- wtf) tag along. When Rom kidnaps Jane to bait John, John goes ape and begins an epic chase through the jungle.
The supporting cast has no surprises. At this point, a Christoph Waltz villain means a cliche of himself. Margot Robbie has a beautiful face, but can she act? Djimon Hounsou plays Powerful African Man in every movie since 2007. And Samuel L. Jackson will do anything for a piece of bacon.
Really, though, only Alexander Skarsgård’s torso matters. His abs are the best effect in the movie and they’re 100% real.
Maybe The Legend of Tarzan rubs people the wrong way because people expected history. We haven’t seen an adventure/romance (Romancing the Stone, The Blue Lagoon) in a while. I think audiences forgot how to interpret a legend. Personally, I can’t get enough of untamed wilderness, damsels in distress, rippling muscles, buried treasure and all the other adventure movie tropes. Tarzan can command animals of the wild. Thor has a magic hammer. James Bond crashes into driverless cars. Movies aren’t real. Last year ya’ll lined up to see The Dinosaur Whisperer. At least the apes in Tarzan don’t speak English.
This summer, get lost in the Legend of Tarzan. Hey. You came to the movies.