"TARZAN THE APE MAN" (1932)       "TARZAN AND HIS MATE" (1934)      "TARZAN ESCAPES" (1936)


"TARZAN FINDS A SON" (1939)      "TARZAN'S SECRET TREASURE" (1941)       "TARZAN'S NEW YORK ADVENTURE" (1942)

 

Johnny Weissmuler. Maureen O'Sullivan. He Tarzan, she Jane - the most memorable pair ever to portray Edgar Rice Burroughs' jungle hero and heroine. All 6 of the stars' vine-swinging teamings are in this 3-disc set. The Lord of the Apes swoops Jane Parker into his life in the trendsetting Tarzan the Ape Man. He man, she woman in the sensual pre-Code Tarzan and His Mate, a tale that includes the sacred elephant graveyard. Next, Tarzan Escapes when a vile bwana aims to exploit him as a sideshow freak. A rift over how to raise Boy (John Sheffield) divides treehouse-sweet-treehouse when Tarzan Finds a Son! Then, so-called civilized folks clash over gold, a metal not worth a coconut to the Ape Man in Tarzan's Secret Treasure. And a different jungle awaits in Tarzan's New York Adventure. Hold that taxi: ungawa!

 

Comments

THE COLLECTION:

Here we have a four disc set from Warner featuring all six of MGM's Weissmuller/O'Sullivan Tarzan films. While not chronologically paired, disc one offers "Tarzan the Ape Man" with "Tarzan Escapes". On disc two we get the infamous "Tarzan and His Mate" partnered with "Tarzan Finds a Son!". Disc three finds "Tarzan's Secret Treasure" partnered with "Tarzan's New York Adventure". Finally Warner also included a fourth disc of special features.

While all of the films are highly enjoyable, they differ in quality of presentation. The earlier films show their age more with less to offer in terms of both sharpness and contrast. The later films in the set, however, look outstanding, leaving little room for criticism. Overall, there really is nothing to complain about image-wise, as I'm sure that these prints are the best that these films have looked in many decades. The audio also varies based on age as one would expect. The older films in the set (most notably the first) have particularly weak audio, but are still acceptable for their age without any major distortions. If you still find them difficult to listen two, all films have optional English, French, and Spanish subtitles. All of the set's extras are found on the final disc. Here we find trailers for all six films, the usual Warner shorts, and a highly informative "Tarzan: Silver Screen King of the Jungle", detailing Tarzan from is pre-MGM exploits to just prior to RKO's purchasing of the franchise rights.

While the films in this set will never be mistaken for high art, they're all pretty fun films to put on and escape with. Sure they almost all share the same plot and are decidedly un-PC, but if you take them for what they are, then you're bound to have a good time. The set is certainly recommended for anyone interested in classic Hollywood adventure films.

 - Brian Montgomery

(aka "Tarzan, the Ape Man" or "Tarzan" or "Tarzan, der Affenmensch" or "Tarzán de los monos" )

 

directed by W.S. Van Dyke
USA 1932

 

Despite the many different Tarzans who have graced the screen, from the silent Elmo Lincoln to the decidedly contemporary Christopher Lambert, there is only one Tarzan in the eyes of true film lovers - Johnny Weissmuller. When the 28-year-old Olympic swimmer took on the role of Tarzan, the Ape Man for MGM in 1932, he became a Hollywood anomaly, the only star to build his career almost entirely around a single role. His popularity also helped make MGM's backlot epic the definitive Tarzan film.

Originally, MGM executives planned to feature Tarzan in a sequel to their popular 1931 adventure Trader Horn, the first sound film to feature extensive location footage shot in Africa. In fact, the studio had so much location footage left over after making Trader Horn that they were looking for another story that would let them use it. Tarzan author Edgar Rice Burroughs' general manager suggested teaming the heroic Trader Horn with Tarzan, so MGM picked up the rights. Then they decided to focus on Tarzan alone.

Excerpt from TMN located HERE

Poster

Theatrical Release: March 25th, 1932

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DVD Review: Warner Brothers (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution

Warner Brothers

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:40:04
Video

4:3 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.14 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

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Audio English, French (Dolby Digital 2.0)
Subtitles English, French, Spanish, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Warner Brothers

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 4:3

Edition Details:
• All-new feature length documentary
• Fabulous Vintage Shorts
• Theatrical Trailers of All 6 Weissmuller/O'Sullivan Tarzans

DVD Release Date: June 8th, 2004
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Chapters 27

 



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directed by Cedric Gibbons
USA 1934

During the studio era, when scores of motion pictures were cranked out on a weekly basis, many performers wound up being typecast in particular kinds of roles. It was the nature of the assembly-line beast. Bigger talents, for the most part, had no problem with this, since they were able to occasionally move between their accepted personas and other types of characters. But lesser actors were often forced to inhabit exactly the same character over and over again, throughout their careers. Their public practically demanded it.

Johnny Weissmuller is the best example of this. All anybody knew about him when he was cast as Tarzan, King of the Jungle, was that he was a champion amateur swimmer, was strikingly handsome, and couldn't act a lick. And that was all anybody knew about him 12 movies and 16 years later, when he finally quit playing Tarzan and took on the less-heralded role of Jungle Jim. Tarzan and His Mate (1934) was the second, and easily the most memorable, of Weissmuller's Tarzan pictures. It's briskly paced, beautifully photographed, and features a racy swimming sequence that was censored at the time of the movie's release. All that, and you get to see Tarzan wrestle a rubber alligator!

Excerpt from TMN located HERE

Poster

Theatrical Release: April 20th, 1934

DVD Review:  (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

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directed by Richard Thorpe
USA 1936

Noble-born English woman Jane Parker lives with her wild man sweetheart, Tarzan, in a tree-top hideaway deep in the heart of the African jungle. Jane and Tarzan's home is equipped with running water, an elevator operated by an elephant and a monkey-powered fan. While Jane and Tarzan enjoy their peaceful life, Jane's relatives from England, Rita and her brother Eric, arrive in Africa intent on finding Jane and taking her back to England. Rita and Eric commission the nefarious Captain Fry to lead them to Jane so that they can tell her that she must go to London to sign legal papers relating to her recently deceased uncle's bequest. Captain Fry, an animal hunter, initially denies Eric and Rita's request because he knows the dangers involved in such a trek, but he eventually agrees to escort them in the hope of finding and capturing the infamous great white ape and exporting it to London!

Excerpt from TMN located HERE

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Theatrical Release: November 6th, 1936

DVD Review:  (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC 



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directed by Richard Thorpe
USA 1939

When the plane carrying Richard Lancing and his family crashes over the African jungle, the lone survivor is Lancing's infant son, whom jungle inhabitants Tarzan and Jane find and rear as their own. Five years after they find the child, whom they call "Boy," Jane is just beginning to realize that the jungle is a dangerous place in which to rear a mischievous boy when a safari led by Sir Thomas Lancing arrives in search of his missing relatives. After finding the plane wreckage, Sir Thomas insists upon continuing the search, although his greedy cousin Austin, who stands to inherit half the vast Lancing estate once Richard is declared dead, is content to accept Jane's explanation that Richard, his wife and child perished in the crash. Sir Thomas is unconvinced, however, and when he notices the resemblance between Boy and the Lancing family, Austin and his snooty wife propose that they take the boy as their ward, thus ensuring their control over the Lancing estate. When Thomas objects, Austin orders him held prisoner and convinces Jane to give the boy up. Going against Tarzan's wishes, Jane traps him in a grotto and brings the boy to the Lancings. As Jane leads the expedition through the jungle, Thomas warns Jane of Boy's danger, but Austin kills him before he can go for help. Soon after, the expedition is captured by a band of savage cannibals and Jane risks her own life so that Boy can escape. Boy survives the perils of the jungle to free Tarzan, and they return with an army of elephants to trample the cannibal village. Tarzan then forgives Jane, and the reunited family returns home!

Excerpt from TMN located HERE

Poster

Theatrical Release: June 16th, 1939

DVD Review:  (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC 



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directed by Richard Thorpe
USA 1941

One day, Boy, the son of Tarzan and Jane, finds some gold nuggets in the river near their African jungle home. That night, after Jane tells Boy stories about civilization, he decides to go and look for it. After leaving his parents a note, Boy rides his little elephant, Buli, and takes the family's pet chimpanzee, Cheeta, with him. After many adventures, Boy meets a young native named Tumbo and together they escape from a charging rhinoceros. The children go to Tumbo's village, where they find his mother dying from a fever. When the tribe sees Boy, they think that he has brought the ravaging fever with him and start to burn him at the stake. Just then, a truck arrives with some white men carrying guns. They save Boy, but the natives attack them until Tarzan arrives and stops them. The men are scientists, led by Prof. Elliott, who are looking for an ancient tribe. On the way to Tarzan and Jane's treehouse, Boy shows the other two scientists, Vandermeer and Medford, a nugget and tells them that there are more in the river. Tarzan is suspicious of Medford, who is impressed with the "richness" of the area in which he and Jane live!

Excerpt from TMN located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: December 1st, 1941

DVD Review:  (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC 



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directed by Richard Thorpe
USA 1942

Tarzan’s New York Adventure (1942). To cite a fairly primitive but none the less enjoyably unpretentious example of satire, check out this mainly routine romp directed by Richard Thorpe in which Boy (Johnny Sheffield) gets kidnapped from the African jungle by circus animal hunters (including Charles Bickford and Chill Wills), and Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller) and Jane (Maureen O’Sullivan) have to fly to New York in order to rescue him. “We’re going into places that are more tangled than the worst underbrush in the jungle,” Jane cautions Tarzan before they depart for the urban jungle, suggesting that Myles Connolly and his screenwriting cohorts were perfectly aware of some of the ironies involved—-although I suspect that Tarzan getting routinely fingerprinted at U.S. Customs wasn’t intended as a gag. If you aren’t too distracted by Tarzan speaking pidgin English (“Jane beautiful—-Jane good”) while Jane and Boy talk like ordinary suburbanites, you might be amused by the way New York--and, more generally, modern technology and appliances--gets interpreted by Tarzan.

(For a far more sophisticated version of the same kind of humor, check out Jean Rouch’s 1969 Petit Ó petit, unfortunately available only without subtitles, in which the black hero from Ghana comes to Paris and winds up measuring the skulls and pondering ethnographically the quaint folkways of white Parisians.) Otherwise, this is mainly notable for superb stunts by Cheetah the chimpanzee and various elephants—-the true stars of this movie, and in some respects the most intelligent characters.

Excerpt of Jonathan Rosenbaum's article at DVDBeavwer located HERE

Poster

Theatrical Release: May 1942

DVD Review:  (The Tarzan Collection Vol. 1) - Region 1 - NTSC

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DVD Box Cover

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Distribution

Warner Brothers

Region 1 - NTSC





 

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