MGM via Everett Collection
Looks as though the familiar yell of the original jungle warrior himself, Tarzan, will once again be heard in theaters the world over, with Warner Brothers announcing a release date of July 1, 2016 for the live-action 3D adventure. Sound exciting? Hardly – in fact, here’s why Tarzan is already doomed to fail: CGI.
Yes, the darling of modern movie-making is, unfortunately, sure to zap all the juice out of this once-ripe papaya of pulp heroes. After all, is there anything truly menacing about a pixilated puma or a computer-rendered rhinoceros? No – and that was truly a major appeal of Tarzan, specifically, taking viewers into a world most would never go: the deepest, darkest climes of Africa, complete with a real person interacting with the most-dangerous of jungle beasts.
Sure, those "darkest climes" of cinema yore were simply another Hollywood back lot (and fancy editing made the "menace" seem more real than in actuality) but replacing actual animals with near 100 percent CGI versions will surely remove any of the genuine intrigue and excitement – particularly with Tarzan’s pal Cheetah. It’s one thing to suspend disbelief with a King Kong or Planet of the Apes (both of which depict animals larger-than-life, or creatures of pure fantasy). It is quite another to immediately recognize a phony chimp, complete with an actor looking in the general direction of the post-production induced co-star.
Look for Tarzan 3D to swing to the ground with a large, loud thud – even with stars such as True Blood's Alexander Skarsgård, Margot Robbie, and Sam Jackson attached.