The Legend of Tarzan Review

One word to describe this film: Mediocre. It is neither good nor bad, just somewhere in the middle. It certainly has many elements going for it: strong cast and crew, rich storytelling elements, etc. However, the end result is a very bland film that wastes a talented cast.
You Are Lord Of The Apes
Even though the cast is wasted, no one here gives a particularly poor performance. Christoph Waltz does the same role he has been doing since Inglorious Bastards (Django Unchained excluded). It may be a tiring role, but he does a good enough job at it. Margot Robbie gives some fire to her performance as Jane, but she is ultimately not given very much to do. Alexander Skarsgård plays the titular character and he does give a pretty good performance here. He gives some depth to the character, and handles himself very well during the action scenes. I also have to give credit where credit is due: He LOOKS a lot like Tarzan. His physique puts all other men to shame. Then there’s Samuel L. Jackson who, while fun, did not have a reason for being in this film. He felt completely shoehorned and if you removed him from the film there would be no difference in the plot. Speaking of the plot, I have read many people complain about how this film is not an origin story for Tarzan. Personally, that did not bother me. I found it fairly easy to follow along, but I do wish the film had fully committed to being set in a time after Tarzan’s reign in the jungle. There are quite a few flashbacks that essentially tell Tarzan’s origin story, which makes me question why they did not simply tell an origin story in the first place. Nevertheless I was most engaged in the plot when the film treated Tarzan’s past as a bit of a mystery.
No Man Ever Started With Less
The biggest downside to this film is that I did not care for a single character. It is unfortunate because while I like all the actors, the characters were very bland. No one undergoes any development and I never found myself emotionally invested whenever they were in peril. This also means that I was not invested in Jane’s relationship with Tarzan. This is disappointing seeing as though their relationship is supposed to be incredibly strong. I do not fault the actors for this misstep, but the writing did not do a good job conveying their love for each other. Sure, Tarzan is trying to get Jane back for the majority of the film, but it all felt very staged. I never thought their love felt like natural. The direction of the film also could have been sharper. David Yates is best known for directing the 5th-8th of the Harry Potter films, but here he demonstrates an inability to properly direct action. The action scenes felt incoherent as the camera mindlessly shook left and right, leaving the viewer in the role of a detective trying to figure out what is being presented on screen. The CGI is also a mixed bag. Occasionally it would look impressive, but often times it did look completely fake.
Closing Remarks
I had a feeling going into this film that I would be let down, and that is exactly what happened. I am not sure why this film was made or who the filmmakers were targeting, but I have a feeling this film is not going to perform well in the box office (so far it has not been doing well in America). Again, this film is not terrible by any means but it comes across as an uninspired piece of cinema. Hopefully Margot Robbie’s upcoming films fare a bit better (I am looking at you Suicide Squad).
Tarzan

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3 thoughts on “The Legend of Tarzan Review

  1. I have to be honest, I expect nothing of this movie, which is probably why I’ll be seeing it haha. The trailer does suggest an uninspired piece of cinema so I have been warned haha. Good review nonetheless. Are you currently sharing your work on any other movie/tv platforms?

    • Thank you! Haha, you may end up liking it more now that you know what to expect. This is the only platform where I share my thoughts on all things related to Movies and TV.

  2. I think you might be right, but I’ll try not to get my hopes up haha. Well, if you were looking for an additional platform, allow me to introduce you to Moviepilot/Creators. I’d love to help you get your work seen on there. Feel free to shoot me an e-mail, my contact details on my blog. Would love to hear from you.

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