Tarzan has been dusted off, his abs polished and his vocabulary spruced up in David Yates’ handsome but altogether pointless “The Legend of Tarzan,” a chest-thumping resurrection of the Ape Man that fails to find any reason for the iconic character’s continued evolution.
Tarzan and Hollywood were born almost simultaneously, like conjoined twins of a new pop-culture machine. The first “Tarzan” silent came just a few years after Edgar Rice Burroughs’ initial novel.
“The Legend of Tarzan” suggests not, and the film’s main source of suspense is watching it twist and contort a century-old property into something meaningful.
Played with sufficient muscle and smarts by Skarsgard, Tarzan leads an uprising through his ability to communicate with animals and the (largely faceless) natives.