Tarzan (1999)

"Very Good"

Tarzan (1999) Review


Tarzan the Ape Man gets the Disney treatment this year. For some classic characters (Snow White, Bambi), the transition has been a positive one. For others (Pocahontas), it's been a disaster. Thankfully, Tarzan is among the former group.

The last time we saw Tarzan, he was saving a Lost City in the worst film of 1998 (shockingly titled Tarzan and the Lost City). The story is a bit more traditional this time, with Tarzan adopted by gorillas after his human parents are killed by a leopard. When he grows up, a group of British explorers stumble upon him, and after the "You Tarzan, me Jane" exchange, the British bad guy, Clayton, decides he's going to take all the gorillas back to Britain for sale. Adventure ensues, along with a love story and singing.

For an animated Disney plot, it's considerably better than recent fare. In fact, it might be too good - the kids in our audience were more often found cowering in the aisles than watching the picture from their seats. Be aware that Tarzan has its share of adult moments (including a hanging, seen in shadow) - more than I'd thought appropriate. The animation is top-notch, of course, and most of that will be wasted on the youngsters, too.

Tarzan is also (thankfully--most thankfully) light on the musical numbers. There's only one song performed by the characters, when the gorillas take over the human camp and do a rendition of "Stomp." The rest of the music is all in the background, fairly well done by Phil Collins. Again, it's awfully nice to not have to put up with a diva or two on the soundtrack. Even the whole talking animals thing makes sense this time: Tarzan can speak to them. The other humans cannot. Well done.

As for the annoying sidekicks (voiced by ROSIE O'DONNELL and Wayne Knight), I leave them for either your mirth or your displeasure. Ultimately, this Disneyfied Tarzan ends up somewhere between The Lion King and Hercules. You can decide for yourself exactly where.

The DVD is light on extras -- including about 10 minutes of deleted scenes, kids' games, and music videos.

[]Join the Disney Movie Club and get three free Disney DVDs![][]

Monkey see, monkey do.



Facts and Figures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Producer:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Notorious British filmmaker Nick Broomfield teams up with Austrian music documentary producer Rudi Dolezal to...

The Mummy Movie Review

The Mummy Movie Review

To launch their new Dark Universe franchise, Universal has taken an approach that mixes murky...

Advertisement
My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

Daphne du Maurier's 1951 mystery-romance novel has been adapted for theatre, radio, TV and film,...

Wilson Movie Review

Wilson Movie Review

It's never helpful when a comedy becomes a bit too smug about its own quirkiness....

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

A fictionalised story from the life of Wolfgang Mozart, this lavishly produced period drama is...

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

This British satirical comedy may be a bit of a mess, but since it's based...

Detour Movie Review

Detour Movie Review

This may look like a rather typical American indie thriller, but British filmmaker Christopher Smith...

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Boldly optimistic, this action-packed adventure breathes fresh life into the DC universe with a welcome...

Baywatch Movie Review

Baywatch Movie Review

Clearly, it's a risky proposition adapting a cheesy vintage TV series for the big screen:...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.