TARZANS GREATEST ADVENTURE
It is immediately apparent that care and attention has been placed into Tarzan's Greatest Adventure. John Guillermin gives the film a gritty realism that had been lacking in the Tarzan series since at least 1934. There are some exciting action sequences Tarzan hunting through the jungle; firing down on his pursuers with arrows; an incredibly tense scene where a tarantula crawls up Gordon Scotts leg; Tarzan trapping Slades boat with fallen trees and they throwing dynamite to try and kill him; Sara Shanes suspenseful venture into the villains boat to get medicine for Tarzan; and especially the fabulous climactic clifftop fight between Slade and Tarzan. Gordon Scotts Tarzan is given a toughness that you would never see in Johnny Weissmullers far cuter version of the role at one point, he shoots a man at point blank range with an arrow. At the end of the film, we see Gordon Scott standing atop the cliff looking down as Sara Shanes boat passes by on the river below something that clearly emphasises that Tarzan's Greatest Adventure contains none of the warm fuzzy romantic fadeouts that the other Tarzan films do.
Gordon Scott was rather wooden as Tarzan in his initial entries but has grown comfortably into the part without the pidgin English, his Tarzan comes with a grimly determined conviction. The villains are also depicted with an unusual degree of convincingly rough-hewn complexity Slade is one of the few villains ever created in the films that was a worthy nemesis for Tarzan. One can also note one of the early screen appearances of Sean Connery and in a rare villainous role for him as one of Slades gang who gets killed off by Tarzan.
Gordon Scotts other Tarzan films are:- Tarzans Hidden Jungle (1955), Tarzan and the Lost Safari (1957), Tarzans Fight for Life (1958), Tarzan and the Trappers (1958) and Tarzan the Magnificent (1960).
Tarzan's Greatest Adventure was directed by John Guillermin, who would later go onto to also make Tarzan Goes to India for Sy Weintraub. The British-born Guillermin went onto other big adventure films, war films and spectacles such as Guns at Batasi (1964), The Blue Max (1966), The Bridge at Remagen (1969) and Shaft in Africa (1973). He is mostly remembered today for for the disaster film The Towering Inferno (1974) and the infamous Dino De Laurentiis King Kong (1976) debacle and its sequel King Kong Lives (1986), as well one further venture back into jungle adventures with Sheena (1984).