Tarzan and His Mate (1934) starring Johnny Weissmuller, Margaret O’Sullivan, Neil Hamilton, Paul Cavanagh
In Tarzan and His Mate, Harry Holt returns to the jungle, searching for ivory from an elephant burial ground. He still hopes to talk Jane into leaving Tarzan, and returning with him. And Harry’s partner, Martin, has eyes for her as well … And his own plans for getting the ivory. At any price …
Cast of characters
- Tarzan (Johnny Weismuller, Tarzan’s New York Adventure). King of the Jungle, who speaks broken English. But, is fluent in Elephant, Ape, and a variety of other languages. He and Jane live in happiness in their jungle home … until these visitors arrive.
- Jane Parker (Margaret O’Sullivan, Maisie Was a Lady). Tarzan’s true love … and who truly loves him as well. Their “good morning, I love you” routine is very sweet. Despite the memories of her old life, and the goodies that Harry & Martin offer, she has no interest in returning. If Tarzan were dead, that could change … For the record: she’s as deadly with a rifle as the men, has the brains to start a fire to hold back the wild animals when they’re out of ammunication, etc. Brains and ability as well as beauty.
- Harry Holt (Neil Hamilton, Batman, The Family Jewels). Jane’s friend from civilization. He still has a crush on her, and wants her to return with him. He’s there for ivory, to make them all rich. And yet, he’s not the villain. A romantic rival, yes. A man who wants what’s best for Jane. But not someone who would shoot someone in the back …
- Martin Arlington (Paul Cavanaugh, The Four Skulls of Jonathon Drake). Harry’s business partner, who also falls for Jane. And really wants that ivory. And he’s the kind of unscrupulous person to shoot Tarzan when nobody’s looking.
Thoughts on Tarzan and His Mate
- The first sequel to Tarzan the Ape Man
- Clearly pre-code — Jane goes swimming in the nude (filmed from behind)
- Adult Cheeta dies, protecting Jane from a rhinoceros attack. Followed by a touching funeral.
- Beautiful cinematography
- Tarzan sends an elephant to clear the path for Harry and Martin.
- Tarzan rescues Jane from rhino, panther, leopard, crocodile, etc. Just another day at the office.
- The main conflict in the movie comes when Tarzan refuses to lead the safari the rest of the way to the elephant graveyard. So, Martin mortally wounds one of the elephants. “If I can’t have one guide, I’ll have another.” And the safari follows the dying elephant to the graveyard. After Jane convinces Tarzan to not kill Martin.
- Martin repays that kindness by later shooting Tarzan when he thinks nobody is watching. Unknown to Martin, young Cheeta and the other apes nurse him back to health. And he might arrive in time to rescue them from an attack by an unfriendly tribe of natives …
Editorial review of Tarzan and His Mate courtesy of Amazon.com
Tarzan and His Mate is a 1934 American pre-Code action adventure film based on characters created by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Directed by Cedric Gibbons, it was the second in the Tarzan film series to star Johnny Weissmuller. In 2003, the United States Library of Congress deemed the film “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.
Tarzan and his wife Jane live in the jungle, along with their chimpanzee Cheeta. Harry Holt and his business partner Martin Arlington, leading a large party of locals, meet them on their way to take ivory from an elephant burial ground. Holt had visited the burial ground with Tarzan on an earlier trip, during which he had also met Jane. Holt had sought Tarzan out, as he was the only one who knew the way to the burial ground. On this trip, Holt tries to convince Jane to return with him to civilization by bringing her gifts such as clothing and modern gadgets. Jane tells him she would rather stay with Tarzan. She does agree to convince Tarzan to act as their guide.