Today we are cracking open the Disney vault to have a look at the 1999 classic, Tarzan. Tarzan is actually one of my wife’s favorite Disney movies so I have to be really careful what I say here. This was one of the last big hits for Disney leading into the new millennium with movies like Atlantis and Treasure Planet not doing so well at the box office, even though they were great movies.
How to Download Tarzan
You can download or stream the film from a digital platform. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and make your choice. If you want to see another movie about the same hero, check out The Legend of Tarzan.
The Movie Review
It does not take a rocket scientist to realize that what we have here is a retelling of the classic Tarzan story, but with a Disney twist. The movie starts with a couple being shipwrecked and ending up in an African jungle. The mother and father are killed by a violent leopard called Sabor, but the child is saved.
How is the child saved? Baby Tarzan is saved by a gorilla called Kala who lost her own baby to Sabor! Kala takes Tarzan back to her pack, group, or whatever you want to call them, and her husband and leader of the gorillas, Kerchak is less than pleased. The whole opening sequence of Tarzan is fantastic and one of the best Disney has ever done in my opinion.
We get to see Tarzan grow up with the gorillas and he is always trying to earn the respect of Kerchak. Tarzan is not alone as he has two good friends in the elephant Tantor and Terk who is the niece of Kala. I love the friendship that these three have and Tantor is an absolute hoot!
A team of explorers from England arrives in the jungle that consists of, Professor Porter, his daughter Jane and hunter Clayton and they are looking to study the gorillas. Jane ends up separated from the group and Tarzan makes the save. He is fascinated by her as she is the first person like him that he has ever seen.
Tarzan starts to go to the camp of these explorers more and more. Tarzan becomes closer and closer to Jane and he also starts to learn more about the human world too. He is asked to show them where the gorillas live as they want to study them. However, Kerchak has warned Tarzan about these people so he does not want to tell them.
We pretty much realize that Clayton is a bad dude from the moment we see him! Clayton ends up betraying everyone and plans to capture and sell the gorillas! This leads to Tarzan, Jane, and Tarzan’s friends having to fight off these invaders to protect his family. It is a typical Tarzan story in every regard, but it is told exceptionally well.
I also like how Disney did not shy away in terms of the villain Sabor. Sabor is one of the most savage and brutal villains that we have ever had in a Disney movie! He is interesting in that he does not talk or has no actual “character” he is just a savage leopard that wants to kill and eat!
The whole movie looks amazing, and the animation (which was partly done by Tony Hawk) looks incredible! The whole look of the movie is very bright and vibrant which I like. We also have a great soundtrack with the iconic song You’ll Be In My Heart by Phill Collins being one of five he did for the movie.
- This is just an awesome Disney version of the Tarzan story
- Sabor is a great and dangerous villain, I liked him even more than Clayton!
- Over 20 years have passed since this was released and it still looks great
- It has a fantastic Phill Collins-led soundtrack
- In what is becoming a common theme with my Disney reviews, Tarzan does not have a 4K release!
- Some smaller children may be frightened by Sabor