Tarzan Movies

The Legend of Tarzan (2016) has been added to the page

The Legend of Tarzan (2016) has been added to the page

Want to know the best Tarzan movies?  How about the worst Tarzan movies?  Curious about Tarzan’s box office grosses or which Tarzan movie picked up the most Oscar® nominations? Need to know which Tarzan movie got the best reviews from critics and audiences and which got the worst reviews? Well you have come to the right place….because we have all of that information.

Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan was born in 1912.  Tarzan went from a magazine publication in 1912, to a novel in 1914, to movies in 1918.  Since then Tarzan has become one of the most recognizable fictional characters of all-time.

This Tarzan Movie Ranking page comes from a request by Tim, Sarah, Kelly67 & Dan (we think).  Overall we ranked 34 Tarzan movies.  Huge Tarzan fans will notice some missing Tarzan projects.  Tarzan serials, Tarzan movies that were made for television and movies that did not get released in theaters in North America were not included.

Christopher Lambert in 1984's Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan

Christopher Lambert in 1984’s Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan

Tarzan Movies Can Be Ranked 6 Ways In This Table

The really cool thing about this table is that it is “user-sortable”. Rank the movies anyway you want.

  • Sort Tarzan movies by who played Tarzan.
  • Sort Tarzan movies by adjusted domestic box office grosses using current movie ticket cost
  • Sort Tarzan movies by adjusted worldwide box office grosses using current movie ticket cost
  • Sort Tarzan movies how they were received by critics and audiences.  60% rating or higher should indicate a good movie.
  • Sort by how many Oscar® nominations each Tarzan movie received and how many Oscar® wins each Tarzan movie won.
  • Sort Tarzan movies by Ultimate Movie Rankings (UMR) Score.  UMR Score puts box office, reviews and awards into a mathematical equation and gives each movie a score.
  • Use the search and sort button to make this page very interactive.
  • *** If the domestic box office total is the same as the worldwide box office total…that means that the worldwide total is unknown.
RankMovie (Year)Who Played TarzanAdjusted B.O. Domestic (mils.)Adjusted B.O. Worldwide (mils.)Critic Audience RatingOscar Nom / WinUMR Score
Tarzan And His Mate (1934)Johnny Weissmuller$84.90$200.6080.0%00 / 0050.76
Tarzan The Ape Man (1932)Johnny Weissmuller$146.40$267.2075.5%00 / 0058.17
Tarzan (1999)Voice by Tony Goldwyn$285.00$746.9075.0%01 / 0167.25
Tarzan the Magnificent (1960)Gordon Scott$31.50$48.1073.5%00 / 0039.42
Tarzan's New York Adventure (1942)Johnny Weissmuller$147.00$249.5072.5%00 / 0056.85
Tarzan Escapes (1936)Johnny Weissmuller$112.50$197.2068.0%00 / 0049.40
Tarzan's Secret Treasure (1941)Johnny Weissmuller$138.40$258.8065.5%00 / 0052.23
Tarzan Finds A Son (1939)Johnny Weissmuller$125.10$193.9064.0%00 / 0049.47
The Legend of Tarzan (2016) Alexander Skarsgård$101.60$157.6064.0%00 / 0045.82
Tarzan Triumphs (1943)Johnny Weismuller$120.40$213.2063.5%00 / 0048.50
Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan (1984)Christopher Lambert$115.10$115.1062.5%03 / 0048.42
Tarzan's Three Challenges (1963)Jock Mahoney$28.00$62.3060.0%00 / 0032.54
Tarzan and the Leopard Woman (1946)Johnny Weissmuller$77.10$157.7058.5%00 / 0039.44
Tarzan's Greatest Adventure (1959)Gordon Scott$35.10$35.1057.5%00 / 0032.46
Tarzan's Savage Fury (1952)Lex Barker$17.10$38.0057.0%00 / 0029.44
Tarzan and the Amazons (1945)Johnny Weissmuller$72.00$158.5056.5%00 / 0037.72
Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943)Johnny Weissmuller$73.10$160.1055.5%00 / 0037.41
Tarzan and the Huntress (1947)Johnny Weissmuller$71.40$145.0055.0%00 / 0036.92
Tarzan and the Lost Safari (1957)Gordon Scott$39.40$93.6054.5%00 / 0031.73
Tarzan's Peril (1951)Lex Barker$36.10$70.8053.0%00 / 0030.51
Tarzan and the Jungle Boy (1968)Mike Henry$9.70$9.7050.0%00 / 0025.00
Tarzan and the Great River (1967)Mike Henry$15.70$16.0050.0%00 / 0025.93
Tarzan and the Valley of Gold (1966)Mike Henry$19.20$19.4049.0%00 / 0026.01
Tarzan and the Mermaids (1948)Johnny Weissmuller$58.20$108.7048.5%00 / 0031.82
Tarzan's Magic Fountain (1949)Lex Barker$49.00$90.2048.0%00 / 0030.16
Tarzan and the Slave Girl (1950)Lex Barker$40.10$75.9047.5%00 / 0028.54
Tarzan of the Apes (1918)Elmo Lincoln$49.60$49.7045.0%00 / 0028.84
Tarzan and the She-Devil (1953)Lex Barker$11.80$26.1042.0%00 / 0021.57
Tarzan's Hidden Jungle (1955)Gordon Scott$19.50$43.8042.0%00 / 0022.76
Tarzan's Fight for Life (1958)Gordon Scott$28.90$78.4041.0%00 / 0023.75
Tarzan Goes To India (1962)Jock Mahoney$35.30$86.8036.5%00 / 0022.62
Tarzan the Ape Man (1959)Denny Miller$26.50$69.1034.5%00 / 0020.33
Tarzan and the Lost City (1998)Casper Van Dien$3.90$3.9032.0%00 / 0015.64
Tarzan the Ape Man (1981)Miles O'Keeffe$110.90$110.9029.0%00 / 0030.82

Stats and Possibly Interesting Things From The Above Tarzanl Table

  1. Ten Tarzan movies crossed the magical $100 million domestic gross mark.  That is a percentage of 29.41% of his movies listed. Tarzan (1999) is the biggest Tarzan box office hit.
  2. An average Tarzan movie grosses  $67.26 million in adjusted box office gross.
  3. Using RottenTomatoes.com’s 60% fresh meter.  12 Tarzan movies are rated as good movies…or 35.29% of his movies.  Tarzan And His Mate (1934) is the highest rated Tarzan movie while Tarzan the Ape Man (1981) is the lowest rated Tarzan movie.
  4. Two Tarzan movies received at least one Oscar® nomination in any category…..or 5.88% of the Tarzan movies.
  5. One Tarzan movie won at least one Oscar® in any category…..or 2.94% of the Tarzan movies.
  6. An average Ultimate Movie Rankings (UMR) Score is 39.86.  10 Tarzan movies scored higher that average….or 29.41% of the Tarzan movies.   Tarzan (1999) got the the highest UMR Score while Tarzan and the Lost City (1998) got the lowest UMR Score.
Johnny Weissmuller played Tarzan 12 times

Johnny Weissmuller played Tarzan 12 times

Possibly Interesting Facts About Tarzan

1. The Tarzan stories have been translated into more than 56 languages, and reportedly more than 25 million copies of the Tarzan books have been sold worldwide.

2. The first actor to play Tarzan was Elmo Lincoln in 1918’s Tarzan of the Apes

3. Johnny Weissmuller played Tarzan the most times: 12 movies from 1932 to 1948.  To see a list of other Tarzans….check out this page from HubPages’ Glory Miller.  Actors Who Played Tarzan.

4. Maureen O’Sullivan and Brenda Joyce played Jane the most times.  O’Sullivan played Jane 6 times while Joyce played Jane five times.

5. Brenda Joyce is the only actress to appear opposite a different Tarzan.  She starred  opposite Johnny Weissmuller four times. However, her last performance as Jane, in 1949’s Tarzan’s Magic Fountain,  was with Lex Barker as Tarzan

6. Lex Barker played Tarzan 5 times from 1949 to 1953.  Each time a different actress played Jane.

7. Mike Henry played Tarzan 3 times. Henry experienced so many traumas (chimp bites, infections, and that the chimp almost tore off his jaw) that he quit the Tarzan series. Henry would file two law suits  against the Tarzan producers.

8.  The Legend of Tarzan starring Samuel L, Jackson (not as Tarzan) was the first Tarzan movie in 17 years.

9. The art work for the Tarzan movie poster is very impressive.  An excellent movie blog to check out is Tarzan Movie Posters by Steve Lensman.

10. Check out Tarzan‘s career compared to current and classic actors.  Most 100 Million Dollar Movies of All-Time.

Academy Award® and Oscar® are the registered trademarks of the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences.

(Visited 28,510 times)

40 thoughts on “Tarzan Movies

  1. Steve

    Just got around to your Gordon Scott video. A whole bunch of wonderful posts. These Tarzan and Hercules style actors seem to have the best posters. As for the ratings, can’t argue with the two Tarzans at the top. Greatest Adventure has Sean Connery among the villains but I was a bit disappointed when first watching it that it was Anthony Quayle and not Connery who had the physical confrontation with Tarzan at the end. Quayle was the much more established actor at the time I think. Connery is 5th billed on my DVD of the film. The posters putting him next to Scott must be re-release posters after the first Bond movies made Connery a major star.
    As for Scott, he was certainly one of the best Tarzans, and my favorite next to Weissmuller. He was not only the usual big, well-built guy, but was a decent actor for this sort of thing and was quite athletic. You rated Goliath and the Save Girl (which I have under the title Tyrant of Lydia against the Son of Hercules) rather low, but it is one of the two or three best non-Tarzan Scott efforts. Unlike many Sword and Sandal potboilers this one has an intelligent plot of a city-state caught between the armies of Alexander the Great and Darius the Persian. Scott shows himself as the best sword-fighting hero since the era of Flynn and Power. He really looks dangerous wielding a sword.
    Anyway, a very fun video.

    1. Hey John…I enjoyed reading your comment. I am sure if they put out a new DVD cover on Connery’s Tarzan movie…..Tarzan would not even make the cover….lol. Good stuff.

    2. Hi John, thanks for checking out my Gordon Scott video, glad you liked the posters.

      Tarzan’s Greatest Adventure poster with Sean Connery billed next to Scott’s must have been a post-James Bond re-issue, I’m surprised they didn’t include a head shot of Connery in the artwork.

      I may have knocked Goliath and the rebel slave down nearly a point but it still made the top 10, granted there are only 16 films on this chart but still… 🙂 I bow to your greater knowledge of the peplum genre and am impressed that you can remember which was better and what actually happened in each one.

  2. STEVE
    1 Short but deliciously sweet with visually stunning posters throughout so that choosing the best was exceptionally difficult. However in the end I went for just one of the Jungle Lord which was Tarzan the Magnificent and Buffalo Bill, Hero of Babylon, and Conquest of Mycene. Outstanding stills were those of Scott with his beautiful co-star presumably Eve Brent as Jane from Tarzan’s Fight for Life, Gordon and Steve Reeves from Duel of the Titans, and the solo of Gordon from Tarzan’s Greatest Adventure in which he shared above the title billing with the soon-to-be James Bond. ***

    2 Scott actually had 6 outings as Tarzan but one was in a made for TV movie [ Tarzan and the Trappers ] so both you and El Commandant excluded it and you both had in almost the same order the 5 that each of you did include though you gave those 5 an average of approx. 62% whereas he was stingier with around 54% for critic/audience.

    3 Lex Barker made a string of B movies outside his Tarzan flicks and I was familiar with many of them but your Scott video as well as being a 9.4/10 visual treat was also an educational experience for me for until I saw your selections I could not have named a non-Tarzan movie Gordon made in his short career 1955-1967.

    4 I note that in his opening quote Gordon said he liked the Tarzan movies because there was not much dialogue in them for him to have to speak. The latter being the case I’m sure you wish that YOU KNOW WHO had had the physique to play Tarzan !

    **A poll of the “sexiest 101 males” of the last 100 years from all activities and walks of life has just been published and the Top 5 are in ranking order Sir Sean, Mr Mumbles, Rudolph Valentino, Elvis and Burt Reynolds. Steve Reeves [your next video] is 12th, Mr Demi Moore is 28th and Chuck 52nd. Sadly apart from Mr M and Elvis none of my other idols are included nor are Sir Maurice or Alexander Archibald Archie Leach

    1. Thanks Bob, appreciate the review, rating and trivia.

      I almost included Tarzan and the Trappers and had a poster for it too, but it wasn’t really a movie, 3 episodes of a cancelled tv series strung together and ultimately left out of the video.

      I think Gordon Scott was historically the first ‘Color’ Tarzan. All the previous Tarzans were in glorious black and white. For jungle adventures color was a lot better than B/W. All that foliage made the visuals a little too messy in monochrome.

      Oh pur-lease! Rudolph Valentino still listed as a ‘sexiest male’ nearly 100 years after he starred in those silent films and topping Elvis the Pelvis! I call shenanigans! Who even remembers him? All his devoted fans died of old age decades ago! 🙂

      I’m curious to see if this post gets thru. I’ve tried two other comments earlier today and I can’t see where they went. In Bruce’s spam folder mayhaps?

  3. STEVE
    1 When he had done his stint as Tarzan Lex starred in a number of B movies. Many of them are included in your video and my own favourites among them are the 2 westerns The Yellow Mountain and The Man from Bitter Ridge to which I was pleased to see you have ranked as 14 and 9 respectively. The Yellow Mountain was on a double bill here in Belfast with Tony Curtis’ The Black Shield of Falworth to which I will refer in my next post to Bruce. Lex had a supporting role in the big budget, high grossing movie Away all Boats (1956) starring Jeff Chandler [he of Raw Mind in Eden fame] but perhaps the high point of Lex’s career when he got to appear in the 1967 Woman Times Seven with the Brit Joe Micklewhite.

    2 A marvellous run of striking posters are in this video and those that I feel deserve special mention are the two saucy ones from The Girl in Black Stockings and Jungle Heat, then Tarzan’s Peril and really remarkable ones from Old Shatterhand and Winnetou. Superb stills of Lex and Cheeta in Tarzan and the She Devil, Tarzan’s Magic Fountain and a very unusual one of Lex and Christopher Lee in Torture Chamber of Dr Sadism. Great 9.4/10 presentation.

    3 Unfortunately an exceptionally athletic physique does not guarantee mortal longevity and tragically in 1973 Lex dropped dead of a heart attack at the age of 54 on a street in New York City He was married to actress Arlene Dahl 1951-52 of course to legend Lana Turner from 1953-57.

    1. Hi Bob, thanks for the review, rating and trivia, always appreciated.

      I’d forgotten Bruce had a Tarzan page, I thought he had done a page on Johnny Weissmuller but it must have been this page I was remembering.

      All that exercise and fitness and great physique and you can still topple over and die of a heart attack. It happens on the football pitch too and all the jogging in the world won’t save you either. The heart is treacherous.

      Now that I’ve cheered everyone up let’s get back to the wonderful world of films.

      I wavered on including Woman Times Seven, but reading up on it I found he plays Shirley Maclaine’s husband in one of the 7 stories. From Wikipedia “Ignored by her bestselling author husband (Lex Barker), who is only interested in his fictional female creation Simone, a neglected wife (Shirley Maclaine) turns her visions of herself as Simone into reality. Her shocked husband invites a psychiatrist (Robert Morley) to dinner to examine her for mental illness.” And that was interesting enough for me to include it. Tarzan and Alfie in the same film who would have thought? 🙂

      The Torture Chamber of Dr. Sadism isn’t a great film but it does have striking visuals and a spooky atmosphere reminiscent of Italian horror maestro Mario Bava. One stand out sequence has Barker and co riding in a horse-drawn carriage at night through a dark forest with pale dead bodies hanging from trees.

      1. HI STEVE:

        1 I suppose that what Lex’s sad premature demise illustrates is the difference between physical/brute strength and basic constitutional health. For example gangly James Stewart lived until nearly 90 and little George Burns and flabby Bob Hope became Centurions.

        2 I can emphasise with you overlooking Bruce’s Tarzan page as I have made the same kind of mistake on other issues and I think we should carefully check the index as necessary when broaching what to us are new subjects as it has virtually reached the point now where he has been so prolific that if something related to movies exists he’s most likely touched on it somewhere!.

        1. Hey Bob….you are right….you just never know….which body will make it to a nice old age…hopefully I have the right one….lol. Thanks for the second comment….I like to think our pages cover lots of the history of movies. Sometimes when I am looking at the index page…I can not believe we have so many pages here. 33,000 movies are now in the database…and it grows everyday….today’s new entry? One Foot In Heaven…which somehow I missed when I did the Fredric March page. 🙂

          1. HI BRUCE

            1 I thought you were getting a bit snowed under so I have been holding back on my impending posts to you and it’s pleasing that you’ve been able to look in on some of the exchanges about Steve’s for me fascinating ‘musclemen’ series.

            2 I am just 154 pounds but as I stand only 5ft 5 [darn it even Ladd at 5ft 6 tops me] my weight is still probably too much for my height so that I may resemble more of an elderly Joe Yule Jr albeit a fit one than an Arnie. Nevertheless [and whilst in my mind’s eye you have always been at least 7ft] as I am now 75 I am sure you will appreciate why my role models these days are flabby Centurions Hope and Burns rather than the Big Boys of yesteryear or your own current swoon magnets such as Stallone and Willis !

            3 An Dahl page would be excellent as she was a real eye-popper in her day but then you would need as its companion piece a page on my Rhonda because not only did she and Arlene as screen sisters in the 1956 Slightly Scarlet fight each other for John Payne but surely a woman like Fleming whom Ronnie Reagan chose as his leading lady numerous times deserves a page and you could even pander to Steve’s Chuck idolatry by entitling the page The President’s Lady. Anyway Arlene certainly capitalised on her beauty on screen and off because as well as to Barker she was later married to heart throb actor Fernando Lamas who ultimately in turn married Esther Williams who was in the Cogerson cult movie Raw Mind in Eden I am not a bad stand-in for Dan, am I? Today Arlene and Rhonda live on at 91 and 93 respectively.

          2. Hey Bob….not snowed in yet…though it is forecasted to snow on Sunday…..which today is a nice 75 degree day….that is weather. Seems I have been behind in comments for a week. Work, WoC’s uncle passing away, a fantasy baseball draft and writing new pages has made it difficult to stay on pace with the comments.

            I am sure one day I will be doing a Dahl and Fleming page….I just recently saw Dahl in the very good movie….A Woman’s World….which she is excellent in. Good to know both are still alive….which makes me want to move them up the list of pages to do.

            Another delay….is getting ready to do my March Madness Movie Tournament….this year will see how Loy does against other actresses…it is a silly but fun to me thing I do every March.

            Good feedback as always.

      2. Hey Steve….the heart is indeed treacherous. This Tarzan page has been very very popular. I hope all of your Tarzan videos experience the same thing. I appreciate how your latest videos have expanded my movie knowledge. I really like things that do that.

    2. Hey Bob…good feedback….I did not know he died so young…and that he was married to Dahl and Turner….I think Flora has requested a Dahl page…..thanks for sharing your thoughts on Steve’s video.

  4. I loved The Legend of Tarzan. Shocked there have been so many Tarzan movies. Go see the new one right now you will not be disappointed.

    1. Hey Travis…..glad you enjoyed The Legend of Tarzan. I will have to check that one out…..though I got a 5 minute sneak peek today….as I was waiting for The Secret Lives of Pets to start. Tarzan movies are closing in on 100 years now. Thanks for stopping by.

      1. The legend of Tarzan was rubbish…Tarzan was called John right through the movie.
        Special effects…TRzan doesn’t need special effects, that ridiculous stampede at the end and Tarzan flying between vines…stupid.
        And the title was misleading,..little about the legend, just another weak story…
        Should have been called TARZAN RESCUES JANE AGAIN

        1. Hey Gary….thanks for the mini-review….seems this one is on a rollercoaster ride….the first reviews were pretty brutal…..then it got some good ones….and now some more bad ones are coming in. It has now reached $100 million in North America box office….at first I thought it was going to be lucky to reach $40 million. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.