Here be a dinosaur
Directed by Reinhard Klooss. Voices of Kellan Lutz, Spencer Locke, Trevor St John PG cert, general release, 94 min Me film; you punter. Me ugly Europudding; you deadbeat dad desperate to distract child on bank holiday weekend. Look! Tarzan! Will do if no kids films with Ice Cube in cinema. You go sleep now.
What more do you need to know? This Franco-German distortion of Edgar Rice Burroughs’s durable adventure novel smothers the original tale in a mass of extraneous guff designed to appeal to Americans, sci-fi fans, environmentalists and, it seems, people with foreign objects lodged in their frontal lobes.
Dedicated fans of the vine-swinger will be surprised to discover that the new film begins with an asteroid heading for an ancient version of our planet. We then move a few million years forward to find the Greystoke family camping in a jungle glade. Dad is here to track down some sort of mysterious energy source. Then we get a natural history lesson on the life of the mountain gorilla. Then there’s a helicopter crash and young Greystoke makes his usual accommodation with neighbouring apes.
The film will divert children with a low threshold for make-do animation. The backgrounds and animal sequences are passable. Motion-captured from the movements of Twilight heartthrob Kellan Lutz, Tarzan himself is not an absolute monstrosity. Sadly, the rest of the humans look as if they’ve escaped from an in-flight safety video from the late 1980s. But it’s the dizzying clutter of competing plots that really sabotages the film.
Who’s he? What’s this? Hang on. Was that a dinosaur?
Me no like.