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Tarzan II on DVD

Tarzan II on DVD

The boy raised by apes is back in this minor sequel to the wonderful classic released a few years back.

It tries very hard to repeat the things that made the original so great, but alas it falls short enough that it made us rush back and watch the original again just to get the taste out of our mouths.

Okay, perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration, because so far as made for video releases is concerned, this one isn’t bad. The animation isn’t as good as in the original, but it’s certainly better than a lot of direct to video stuff – and even TV-caliber stuff.

The story is set after the youthful Tarzan has been adopted by his ape mother, but long before he grows to young manhood and meets Jane, so it’s an episode of his growing up that wasn’t covered in the original movie. The story itself is a bit like the Lion King in which Tarzan, discovering he isn’t really an ape and feeling that he has no worth, chooses a life of being an outcast. But rather than finding it a “no worries” type of existence, he discovers new challenges and new friendships that put him in good stead when he eventually returns home to the ape family.

Disney has even brought back Phil Collins for some new songs, as well as some rehashes of some of the great songs from the original. The new tunes pale in comparison with the old ones, but at least they offer a feeling of continuity between the two movies.

The DVD is presented in anamorphic widescreen, 16x9 TV compatible, which is exactly the way we like it and the picture quality is very nice, clean and sharp and bright, though it doesn’t seem as colorful as the original Tarzan.

Audio choices are Dolby Digital and dts 5.1 surround and the audio quality is very good.

Extras include a Phil Collins Music Video, The Legacy of Tarzan (a behind-the-scenes look at how Collins created the new music), Tarzan's Matter-of-Facts – which explains Tarzan novelist Edgar Rice Burroughs' ape language. You also get the usual assortment of games and other activities that make Disney DVD’s such wonderful multimedia experiences for the ankle biters.


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