EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|TARZAN AND THE MERMAIDS (director: Robert Florey; screenwriters: story and screenplay by Carroll Young/based on the characters created by Edgar Rice Burroughs; cinematographer: Jack Draper; editor: Merrill White; music: Dimitri Tiomkin; cast: Johnny Weissmuller (Tarzan), Brenda Joyce (Jane), George Zucco (Palanth), Linda Christian (Mara), John Laurenz (Benji), Fernando Wagner (Varga), Edward Ashley (Commissioner), Andrea Palma (Luana, Mara's mom), Gustavo Rojo (Tiko), Matthew Boulton (British Inspector General); Runtime: 68; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Sol Lesser; RKO; 1948)|
final time Johnny
Weissmuller, the original Tarzan, played the iconic jungle man."
The 12th and
final time Johnny
Weissmuller, the original Tarzan, played the iconic jungle man. The
44-year-old Weissmuller was deemed too old and flabby for the
part (replaced by the younger Lex Barker), and went on to make a number
of Jungle Jim movies. Robert
Florey ("God is my Co-Pilot"/"The Cocoanuts"/"Meet Boston Blackie")
routine Tarzan episode, that's written by Carroll
Young. The film was shot in
in Mexico City, which explains why the extras look more Mexican than
African. In this episode, Tarzan foils pearl thieves.
It's set in
deepest Africa, where the Nyaga
Ratu River meets the sea. There a happy-go-lucky island tribe
known as the Aquatanians dives for pearls, fishes and worships Balu, a
false god created by the evil high priest Palanth (George
Zucco). Partnered with the greedy
trader Varga (Fernando Wagner), dressing up in a gold plaster costume to
play Balu, the high priest controls the tribe by having the deity issue commands from a
top of an isolated rocky island. The venal duo receive pearls from the
tribe as gifts to the deity, and business is good for them.
The fake act is up when Mara (Linda
to be the wife of Tyrone Power), the
beautiful Aquatanian chosen to be
Balu's bride, is taken to the temple for the wedding
ceremony and flees when she notes the deception. Mara loves the
guitar-playing exiled Tiko (Gustavo
Rojo), and swims to get help
from Tarzan (Johnny
Weissmuller). The exhausted Mara
is nursed back to health by Tarzan's mate Jane (Brenda Joyce) and the
postal carrier Benji (John
Mara gives Jane and Tarzan a large black
pearl in appreciation, which Jane donates to the area's new
Ashley) to improve the
community. While Benji takes the pearl to the inspector general (Matthew Boulton) in Nyaga to verify its value.
When the evil duo capture Mara, Tarzan
tracks her back to the temple. There Tarzan fights a giant octopus and
the duo as phonies to the natives. Thereby the natives take care of the
baddies and prepare for the joyous wedding of Mara and Tiko.
REVIEWED ON 6/27/2011 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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