Nothing destroyed the brand integrity quite like the unnecessary Disney direct-to-video sequel market. Many of them over-explain things that weren’t a mystery from the original film, or continue a story that felt self-contained and complete already. Then there’s the others like Tarzan & Jane that are basically three or more episodes of their spinoff shows jammed together with a loose framing device, and these are no better.
Some of these Disney spinoff shows had merit, Aladdin was a ton of fun and Hercules has its fans, but the movies that either acted as springboards or spliced together individual stories frequently don’t work. It’s not just the woefully limited budgets that leave the characters looking “off,” but it’s the lack of a coherent story or reason for the films to exist in general outside of brand recognition.
There’s profits to be had, so damn what made the original film work!
Tarzan & Jane picks up where the original film ended with the couple happily married and coming up on their one-year anniversary. Each episode is a glimpse of Jane’s Britain encroaching on Tarzan’s jungle life and friends. You ever wanted to watch Tarzan become gentrified, then this is the direct-to-video film for you!
Long gone is the sense of danger, the thrill of watching Tarzan swing through the trees, but they kept the awkward Phil Collins songs and added in Mandy Moore, for reasons. I think that’s a basic summary of what’s wrong with this film – it keeps the things that were awkward from the original film and dilutes the strengths. It’s best to leave Tarzan & Jane alone in the jungle.