Testosterone was running wild this weekend, as I finally got the opportunity to watch the much-anticipated The Legend of Tarzan. While the interpretation brought with it a new take on the story, I am happy to report that the story still remains entertaining and keeps Jane as the damsel in distress.
We all know Disney version of Me Tarzan, You Jane. However, The Legend of Tarzan tells the tale of what happens after Tarzan leaves the jungle and his life as man of the apes behind. Specifically, the film begins in London eight years down the road when John Clayton aka Tarzan (I know, right?) is invited to go back to Africa by the governing Belgium government. As the take-charge women she is, Jane refuses to be left behind, but as the Belgian invitation shows hidden motives, this decision becomes worse and worse by the minute. Tarzan must once again save the love of his life, but the only way forward is going back. But as Tarzan will learn, going back is never easy.
As mentioned, this film was highly anticipated if not the most anticipated film of 2016. It took somewhat three years for it to land on the big screen, so the anticipation definitely had enough time to build up. Anyways, it’s finally here, so lets get talking.
What this film does is that it owns its storyline. It has changed names, directions of events and predicted the future, while also filling out missing pieces we didn’t even know that we were missing about the past. Consequently, it owns it own storyline, which I absolutely love. I like that instead of replicating the same old tale that we all know and love, the film wasn’t afraid to change the classical tale to bring something new to the story and the characters. It definitely deserved major points for this.
Also, the story offers some backstory into the past, which adds to the future. By this I mean how Tarzan’s life as man of the apes influences his life as Mr. Clayton. This was done beautifully, which other films – cough cough The Huntsman: Winter’s War – did not managed to do at all. So way to go!
The film is the ultimate action-packed African adventure that you expect it to be. Every other moment brings you Gorilla fights, leopard struggles, kidnappings, shootings and even leon snuggles, but the list goes on and on. It is definitely not a film you will get bored with and the animations in the film are simply amazing.
However, while most parts were good, the film also had its struggles: the chemistry between the iconic lovebirds and the bad, just plainly bad dialogues and lack of comical timing. This is definitely not gonna be fun. Anyways, the night before watching the African adventure I watched an interview with Tarzan’s Alexander Skarsgård and Jane’s Margot Robbie and trust me, it was awkward on another level. These two could give Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan a run for their money. Anyways, I hoped they would step it up in the film, but unsurprisingly this did not happen. They simply just have bad chemistry. However, the constant bad dialogues didn’t help these two connect the slightest.
Nevertheless, the thing that bothered me more than anything, even more than the lovebirds’ bad chemistry, was the forced humor, in which Margot Robbie definitely got the worst end of the stick. Time and time again she was expected to bring humor into her rebellious character and defiant comments, but they just kept falling to the ground over and over and over and over and over again. I can’t stress this point enough. Whether it was because Robbie just isn’t funny or the script was just bad, I don’t know, but it definitely left me with some what-moments throughout the film.
Ultimately, I want to give The Legend of Tarzan three and a half clipboards, because it’s not a bad film, not by a long shot, but it definitely has potential for improvements. However, do to the new storyline and Skarsgård’s insane six-pack, I will give it four.