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The Tarzan Collection Starring Johnny Weissmuller: Volume Two (Tarzan Triumphs / Tarzan's Desert Mystery / Tarzan and the Amazons / and the Leopard Woman / and the Huntress / and the Mermaids)

4.6 out of 5 stars 102 customer reviews

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(Oct 31, 2006)
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Product Description

Tarzan Collection Starring Johnny Weissmuller Vol. 2 (DVD)

Beasts roar, danger abounds and Johnny Weissmuller swoops into the last 6 of his 12 adventures as film's definitive Tarzan. The vine swinger provides World War II heroics in Tarzan Triumphs and Tarzan's Desert Mystery. Next, he welcomes Jane (Brenda Joyce) home and champions a secluded female tribe in Tarzan and the Amazons. A deadly cult proves no match for the jungle lord in Tarzan and the Leopard Woman. And the Ape Man calls in elephants to deal with poachers in Tarzan and the Huntress and rescues a pearl-diving community in Tarzan and the Mermaids. What came next? Weissmuller would return to the wilds as Jungle Jim, Johnny Sheffield (Boy) became Bomba the Jungle Boy, Joyce played Jane again in Tarzan's Magic Fountain and Cheetah became the world's oldest chimp, celebrating birthday 74 in 2006. Ungawa!


The movies in this second collection of Tarzan adventures pass the Samuel L. Jackson Snakes on a Plane title test. Either you want to own a film called Tarzan and the Leopard Woman or you don't. And if you're a fan of the original Tarzan movies, then no doubt you must. These are the last six Tarzan films to star Johnny Weissmuller in the iconic role that spawned a thousand hollers (so ingrained is Carol Burnett's imitation of his signature shout-out that Weissmuller's own performance seems lacking!). Produced for RKO, they are low-budget affairs, but really, who watches Tarzan movies for the production values? The more fake the backdrops and the more obvious the mismatched stock animal footage the better! Tarzan Triumphs (1943) is the best of the bunch. World conflict rears its ugly head in the jungle as Nazis invade a hidden city for its precious oil and tin. Almost worth the price of this set alone is the climactic scene in which Tarzan pursues an evil German through the jungle, tauntingly calling out "Nazi," from behind rocks and trees. There's more wartime intrigue in Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943), which somehow combines a stranded female USO magician (Nancy Kelly), Arab sheiks, more Nazis, and, most memorably, a giant spider and a man-eating plant. Tarzan and the Amazons (1945) and 1947's Tarzan and the Huntress (with a great climactic elephant stampede) offer more traditional jungle villains, exploitative explorers, and unscrupulous animal collectors, respectively. Exotic cults figure in Tarzan and the Leopard Woman (1946) and Tarzan and the Mermaids (1948), which was Weissmuller's vine-swinging swan song.

Maureen O'Sullivan has left the jungle, but Brenda Joyce makes for a very fetching Jane. Johnny Sheffield matures before our eyes as Boy. And Weissmuller still manages to avoid loincloth malfunctions as he swings through the trees and tangles with animal and human adversaries. He is both a role model ("Never kill for fun, only for food," he tells Boy at one point) and something of a jungle chauvinist ("Jungle much more peaceful before woman come," he jokes with Jane). But the breakout star of these films is Cheetah, who effortlessly steals every scene he's in, whether covering his eyes when Tarzan and Jane kiss or parachuting out of an airplane. His finest moment comes at the end of Tarzan Triumphs, when his simian squeals broadcast over a shortwave radio are mistaken by German officers for the voice of "the Fuehrer" It's a Hollywood cliché, but truly, they don't make 'em like this anymore! --Donald Liebenson

Special Features

  • Box Set Includes:
  • Tarzan Triumphs (76 mins.)
  • Tarzan and the Amazons (76 mins.)
  • Tarzan and the Huntress (72 mins.)
  • Tarzan's Desert Mystery (70 mins.)
  • Tarzan and the Leopard Woman (72 mins.)
  • Tarzan and the Mermaids (68 mins.)

Product Details

  • Actors: Johnny Weissmuller, Johnny Sheffield, Brenda Joyce
  • Directors: Wilhelm Thiele, Kurt Neumann, Robert Florey
  • Format: Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: October 31, 2006
  • Run Time: 518 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000HEWEG2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,516 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Tarzan Collection Starring Johnny Weissmuller: Volume Two (Tarzan Triumphs / Tarzan's Desert Mystery / Tarzan and the Amazons / and the Leopard Woman / and the Huntress / and the Mermaids)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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While Tarzan was a moneymaker at MGM, with the outset of WWII, the studio felt Johnny Weissmuller was getting too old, Maureen O'Sullivan wanted out of the series, and the overseas market was lost, so the series was dropped...but RKO would prove the Ape Man had a LOT of life left in him!

Producer Sol Lesser loved the character, and snapped up the rights, wisely keeping Weissmuller, 39, and 'Boy' Johnny Sheffield, at nearly 12, in their signature roles. 'Jane' was written out of the first two features (first caring for her mother, then serving in the war), and the best-loved elements (superhuman heroics, comedy from chimp co-star, Cheetah, wild animal footage) were 'beefed up', dropping the romance, the atmospheric black 'extras', that provided authenticity (but were expensive for a smaller studio to maintain), and the MGM 'glossiness'. Even the Tarzan 'yell' had to be replaced (as the manufactured howl, part Weismuller, part studio magic), was the property of the studio; Weismuller created a 'new' one, that would become so popular that it would be kept, long after he finally retired from the role.

The first RKO entry was perhaps the best of the series; TARZAN TRIUMPHS brought the Nazis into the jungle to tap the resources of a 'lost' city, kidnapping Boy, and leading the previously isolationist Ape Man to utter the famous tag line, "Now Tarzan make war!" With lovely Frances Gifford as a native princess, and Sig Ruman, moving from Marx Brothers' foil to one of Hollywood's busiest 'Nazis', as one of the villains, the film is very entertaining (if extremely violent...Tarzan encourages the locals to grab a gun and kill, Boy shoots one Nazi soldier with a pistol, and even CHEETA machine guns one!).
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As Sean Connery is the definitive James Bond so goes for Johnny Weissmuller as Tarzan. Now were at RKO Studios and Maureen O'Sullivan has left but Johnny Sheffield stayed on as 'Boy'.

TARZAN TRIUMPHS 1943 Stars our princess Francis Gifford, known by all as JUNGLE GIRL in the Republic serial (1941-see my review). Cheetah has a great bit at the end. This is probably the best of the RKO series. Tarzan v.s. NAZIS part one.

TARZAN'S DESERT MYSTERY 1943 Stars Nancy Kelly and Otto Kruger. It's Tarzan v.s. NAZIS part two.

TARZAN AND THE AMAZONS 1945 Introduces Brenda Joyce as 'Jane' and includes Maria Ouspenskaya (WOLFMAN) as the Amazon Queen. No more Nazis here.

TARZAN AND THE LEOPARD WOMAN 1946 OK escapism but you can tell all involved are getting weary.

TARZAN AND THE HUNTRESS 1947 Probably the weakest entry but....

TARZAN AND THE MERMAIDS 1948 The last of the Weissmuller Tarzans. The stand out here is Linda Christian, ZOWIE !!!!

As a footnote the next was TARZAN'S MAGIC FOUNTAIN with Lex Barker in 1949 with Brenda Joyce and Evelyn Ankers (WOLFMAN) and a pretty good Tarzan movie--maybe it will kick off the next collection (post Weissmuller Tarzan ???).
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I have been waiting a long time for some of the wonderful Tarzan films in this collection. My guess is that most people believe that the Tarzan films from MGM are superior to those released in the 1940s by RKO. I may be in the minority, but to me the RKO Tarzan films were a lot more fun. Johnny Weissmuller was still on hand, as well as Johnny Sheffield as Boy. Tarzan Triumphs (1943) with Frances Gifford, has Tarzan up against the Nazi's and is highly entertaining. Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943) is great over-the-top fun as Tarzan, once again, deals with Nazi's and some giant monsters and devouring plants. My two very favorites are Tarzan And The Amazons (1945) with Maria Ouspenskaya as the diminutive Queen of the Amazon women and Tarzan And The Leopard Woman (1946) with Aquanetta. At this time, the very likeable Brenda Joyce had joined the cast as Jane and does an admirable job in the role. The two lesser efforts complete the collection: Tarzan And The Huntress (1947) and Tarzan And The Mermaids (1948). If you enjoyed the first box set, this set will not disappoint!
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I was born in 1954, and grew up watching these exciting films on local TV. Johnny was my childhood idol and one of the biggest thrills of my young life was meeting him in person in 1967. IMO,the Weissmuler/Tarzan films are the greatest movies ever made for boys. I bought the MGM box set when it was released in 2004 and anxiously awaited the release of the RKO series. I ordered this set late Friday, just before midnight, and received it today(October 31st) on the offical release date. Is Amazon fast or what?!! I haven't watched the films yet. I've just been skimming thru so far. Both the video and audio seem clear and crisp. I would've given the set five stars, except for the exclusion of any special features. It would have been fabulous to have interviews with Johnny Sheffield and Brenda Joyce. The MGM set had several good extras and I'd hoped this set would as well. You'd think they would have at least included the trailers. Oh, well. But, it's great to finally have the films on DVD. BTW, I was happy to see that the discs are secured to the folder in a better way than the MGM set. Just recently, the small plastic tab that holds the bonus disc broke off on my set. The RKO tabs are designed in a manner to prevent that.
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Can`t The Tarzan Films Be Made Available On Region 2 Dvd`s
Please can we have the Weismuller Tarzan films on Region 2? They weren't just loved by American boys. The prices seem a bit steep too!
Nov 28, 2013 by Peter Garner |  See all 2 posts
Gordon Scott's Tarzan Films
These particular films are available only on

All 6 Gordon Scott Tarzan movies (as well as the 5 Lex Barker Tarzans) are part of the "Warner Archive" collection. Yes, they cost a little more, but I ordered mine today, as they are currently running a special on them.

Check... Read More
Mar 25, 2010 by ImEzekiel65 |  See all 2 posts
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