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Tarzan Istanbul'da

Tarzan in Istanbul

Turkey 1952
produced by
Sabahattin Tulgar for Milli Film
directed by Orhan Atadeniz
starring Tamer Balci, Hayri Esen, Necla Aygül, Aziz Basmaci, Cemil Demiral, Ziya Aygen, Sadullah Enuysal, Yasar Izgi, Ismail Kara, Hayri Kuloglu, Nejat Özer, Cetin Savas, Selahaddin Topdag, Kemalettin Yönalp, Kunt Tulgar
screenplay by Orhan Atadeniz, based on a character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs, edited by Yilmaz Atadeniz

Tarzan

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Deep in the African jungle, hunter/journalist Tekin and his guide Kundar find a dead man - which carries a note saying ha and his wife and son were attacked by natives and a request to deliver a letter to his brother camil in Istanbul. This Tekin gladly does, and when Camil finally receives and opens the letter, it turns out to contain a map to a priceless treasure. So Camil and Tekin decide to mount an expedition to Africa that also includes lovely Netzla and the self proclaimed hunter Aziz, the comedy relief of the film.

Once in Africa, Tekin hires Kunda as a guide, but once Kundar learns about the treasure, he makes some plans of his own, which includes his two henchman who trail the expedition from now on.

Soon enough, the expedition runs into a hostile tribe of natives who are driven away only when we hear a certain warcry by you-know-who. Eventually, our heroes find the treasure, but before they want to travel back to civilisation they decide to take a few days off. And when Netzla goes swimming one day, she is sure enough attacked by a crocodile and only just saved by a muscular man dressed only in a loincloth, who wrestles and kills the crocodile, then takes her into the jungle with him and introduces himself as Tarzan (Tamer Balci) in pretty much the usual manner.

Actually, Tarzan wants to keep Netzla with him but she asks him to take her back - which he does, making friends with the rest of the group ... and he is of course revealed to be the son of the dead man from the beginning of the film and thus Camil's nephew and the rightful owner of the treasure he, as the lord of the jungle, has of course no need for.

Kundar of course sees in Tarzan a threat to his evil plans, and when Tarzan leaves again he follows and shoots him. Then he and his henchmen who have finally caught up request the treasure from the others at gunpoint - but before they can even hand it over, they are all captured by a native tribe that takes a delight in feeding its captives to the crocodiles - and one by one, our little expedition is made even littler.

Tarzan though is not dead, he quickly heals his injuries from the shot with the help of his chimp Cheetah, takes the next elephant to the native village, fights and defeats the tribe almost single-handedly and frees who's left from the expedition, only Netzla, Tekin and Aziz. The three of them make their escape with Tarzan, but on the way to safety, Tekin wants to fetch the treasure - and is killed by a native spear.

In the end, Tarzan, Netzla and Aziz all travel to istanbul ...

Future action star and director Kunt Tulgar plays Tarzan as a boy in this one in a short sequence at the beginning of the film.

 

Having been presumed lost for decades, this film sounds campy even thanks to its title - but as a matter of fact, Tarzan in Istanbul is a pretty decent jungle adventure very much in the style of the early (and best) Johnny Weissmuller Tarzans, expertly combining the film's actual action with stock footage, footage of zoo animals and some snippets snatched from older Tarzan films (which in fact is a technique MGM applied as well in the Weissmuller films), plus it's a very well-written, well-filmed, well-edited and well-paced movie and probably a better film than the Tarzan films released in the USA during the 1950's. Actually it's a film that deserves much more attention than it currently gets.

Definitely recommended.

 

[Click here to buy it directly from Onar Films]

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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