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Tarzan Escapes
Tarzans Rache

USA 1936
produced by
Sam Zimbalist (associate) for MGM
directed by Richard Thorpe
starring Johnny Weissmuller, Maureen O'Sullivan, John Buckler, Benita Hume, William Henry, Herbert Mundin, Darby Jones, E.E. Clive
written by Cyril Hume, based on characters by Edgar Rice Burroughs, music by William Axt, Sol Levy

Tarzan, Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller), Tarzan at MGM

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Jane's (Maureen O'Sullivan) cousins Eric (William Henry) & Rita (Benita Hume) have taken it upon themselves to find Jane in the jungle where she lives with Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller), to lure her back to London & make her sign some papers for a big inheritance. & to bring them to Jane, they have hired guide & big game hunter Cpatain Fry (James Buckler) who leads them throught he jungle with his right hand Rawlins (Herbert Mundin), his native guide Bomba (Darby Jones) & of course the usual bunch of native porters.

Soon though, it turns out that Cpatain Fry isn't quite as friendly as he looks & is big in capturng & caging apes, & his ultimate triumph would be to cage this fabled white ape everyone's talking about, Tarzan. Of course, neither does he capture Tarzan, nor does the jungle king allow his ape friends to stay caged for long.

Heavy-hearted, Jane lets herself be persuaded to go back to England to sort out legal matters of the inheritance, if only for a few weaks, but still, this leaves Tarzan heartbroken - a situation which Fry perfectly knows to exploit: With Jane gone, it's an easy task to persuade Tarzan that she not only will never come back, but also suggested to him to capture Tarzan, & in the end, Tarzan goes into the cage prepared for him voluntarily. Only Rawlins smells the fish, but Fry shoots him in cold blood.

Then though, the expedition runs into a bunch of natives, the same ones Fry tried to persuade to help him, but they prove to be hostile & soon have everyone tied up & have taken possession of the cage with Tarzan ... of course withthe help of his elephant friends Tarzan can soon escape his cage & organizes an elephant stampede to free his firends & fight the natives (once again, probably it is the footage also used in Tarzan the Ape Man & Tarzan and his Mate, edited together differently). Then the group makes it through some swamps to shake off their native pursuers, for whom the swamp is taboo.

Once they have made it to safety though, Tarzan sends Fry, who tried to kill him & betray everyone, back into the swamps, where he sinks to a horrible death in no time.

& n the end, Eric& Rita tell Jane she doesn't have to go to London after all, she can just sign some papers here. They only wanted to lure her back, but now having seen the wonderful life she is living, they are no longer too sure if they have anything better ...


Taken by its own merits, Tarzan Escapes is still an ok jungle adventure, providing everything one might expect from such a film (stock footage of wild beasts, some live cute chimpanzees, wild lions & big elephants, fierce natives, evil white hunters, ...), but compared to its 2 predecessors, Tarzan the Ape Man & Tarzan and his Mate, Tarzan Escapes is getting a bit dull. True, the first 2 movies of the series did include all those typical elements as well, but using them for the third time in a row (even some whole sequences like the fight against the crocodile have been lifted from the earlier films) does seem a bit tiring, also the fascination for the film's subject (& its possibilities) seems a bit lost here. & some things about this film, like Tarzan's & Jane's treehouse with all the accommodations of a modern home, but made from wood, are actually a bit ridiculous.

Still, despite all that the film is watchable.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
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and your Ex wants
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A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
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directed by
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written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD