Legend of Tarzan: Trailer Review

The CG looks vaguely disgusting in this trailer, like that eerie in between of unsettlingly realistic and horrifically cartoonish. That being said there was an excitement that seemed to persist throughout the trailer.

Whether it was the dramatic pacing of the drums pounding in your ears, or the general heart racing anticipation one feels at seeing Christoph Waltz (please can someone make a film –mainly a musical– where all it is is Christph Waltz doing character skits with Ralph Fiennes and blaring ballads at one another -thank you in advance-)  as a villain in a film, this trailer got me excited for a film I honestly didn’t care for upon seeing the first trailer.

Yes, I love Disney’s Trazan but I’m kind of just sick of seeing various savior stories where either Africans (the Africans in tarzan being the animals, the only native “Africans” depicted in the disney film) as a people are being degraded or liberated, or their country is being violated and pillaged. Fiction’s great and all, but aren’t people tired of seeing European colonization and genocide being both glorified and then, unequally condemned with the “one good white guy” who spoke up when the bullies were at it again story, cus I know I sure am. In this case it seems they are redirecting the savior story by having Jane being the object of gratification, thanks for that, we women sure do like to be saved just like us Africans do. T.T

But with any retellings there needs to be a reason, otherwise its just a washout version of the original. Having watched a few tidbits of the original Trazan films–and man oh man those film–it seems like Trazan only gets more socially conscientious as it gets reinvented. Even so, as the heart of the tale is based on a savior narrative, I think the story can only do so much evolving before its narrative becomes outdated. Here’s to seeing how much painstaking effort they go through to avoid being racially insensitive (such as maybe making Jane and not Africa being the one needing saving) . But like I said, that’s gonna be hard to do with the origins of the story being so rooted in a racist narrative (Come on guys, Tarzan is a white guy raised in Africa who goes to Europe acting and talking like a monkey. According to the original writers of the story, that African culture is “uncivilized” and “brutish”. I’ve read enough Heart of Darkness and Doctor Moreau to see thinly veiled racism when it appears. T.T) [note: I haven’t actually read the original Tarzan books but like I said, the heart of the story transcends the revisions. It’s there in plain sight no matter how you dress it.]

Here’s to hoping they succeed though, ( the scene with Jane about to spit on that Clayton character looks to be an encouraging sign of her strength as a character, but Jane in the Disney film was a badass herself so that’s not really reinventing the wheel). If this film gets some Phil Colins and a few verses of an original song, I might just drag myself to the theater to watch it, but as for now that was a solid trailer with a lot of potential–the only problem is the scale is swinging both ways here.

Hopefully the writers of the story can spruce up the tale so its not so ugly as its original. And maybe fix some of CG while you’re at it. It’s 2016. No one should have to deal with racial insensitivity let alone bad CGI, but as time persists, unfortunately many have to deal with both.

This trailer gets 3 Makeovers and 1 Assimilation Montage.

 

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Watch the Trailer here:

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