Surprisingly good movie on an old theme. This story doesn’t address the well known legend itself, but takes place later, after Tarzan and Jane have married and live in England among the nobility, and Jane is pregnant. The backstory comes up in skillfully handled flashbacks and does not distract from the story at hand, but adds to its intensity, like the friendship with his ape brother, who perceived his leaving the tribe as a betrayal.
I love it when writers and movie makers strive for excellence, and they surpassed themselves in this production. The character is believable both as an English Lord and as a wild man. Equally at ease with gentry as he is with apes. He also looks the part, with pale skin and the northern European physique. They have gone as far as thickening the muscles of his hands from walking on all four as a child on his front knuckles, like apes do.
But most of all, this Tarzan has the true spirit of the character, fiercely protective of those he loves. A true alpha hero with a sense of justice in troubled times in the persecuted world of Belgian Congo. He understands intrigues and politics and fights for justice and the well being of a country in need of help.
I especially liked the details about the historical period. King Leopold of Belgium is exploiting his colony for cacao (chocolate) as demonstrated by the inscriptions on cargo items being loaded on the ships. He also traffics slaves, and is in search of secret diamond mines to pay his enormous debt and buy mercenaries to “pacify” the land.
The villains in this story are twofold. One is a ruthless Belgian secret service agent, and the other a local chief, both with reasons to capture Tarzan. One to use him, the other to kill him… because Tarzan killed his only son long ago. Later we learn that the son hunted and killed Tarzan’s ape mother.
There is also the love story, of course, and it is made very believable. We can relate to Jane’s feeling for Tarzan and his feelings for her. What they have is true love, and it was since the moment they first met, when Tarzan saved Jane’s life and almost died in the process. Then she nursed him to recovery… all shown in flashbacks.
So, if you like adventure historical stories with a lot of action, adventure, and a sense of justice, by all means, go see THE LEGEND OF TARZAN 2, and you won’t be disappointed.
Blasters, Swords, Romance with a Kick