In Which I Enjoy a Problematic Movie

So yesterday I played hooky after a doctor’s appointment and went to see Legend of Tarzan. It was serviceable–I have a thing for the Tarzan story, even though Burroughs is problematic as fuck. Margot Robbie was a decent Jane, and the CGI was great. Skarsgard looked fluid and very lithe, and clearly liked Robbie a lot. Their pairing had chemistry. It was Samuel L. Jackson and Skarsgard who had the most screen time together, and their chemistry is pretty brilliant. I would love a Jackson/Skarsgard buddy movie. HOLLYWOOD, GET ON THAT.

As for the rest of it, well, it’s a Magical Honky[1] Film based on a huge series of Magical Honky Books, so it’s not going to be anything other than–you guessed it–problematic. And oh, that source material! Before going in, I skimmed the original Tarzan one and two, and rolled my eyes in all the usual places.

I wouldn’t mind seeing a film about the early stages of Tarzan and Jane’s relationship, with Skarsgard and Robbie on deck. That’s what I’m really into the Tarzan thing for, and while I got a bit of it here, there was much more roller derby and not a lot of girlfriend. Which is okay, I like roller derby.

All in all, it did exactly what I wanted it to do, even though I winced at all the Magical Honky tropes.

So today it’s back to work. I’m glad I listened to my writing partner, who said, “THIS IS TOTALLY YOUR NARRATIVE CRACK, GO SEE IT AND ENJOY IT FA CRY-EYE.” I have been hitting the “work work and nothing else” button a little hard lately. Sinking back into the Cormorant Run world is…strange, and a little disconcerting. It came out of my head in such a rush, all its sharp edges tearing, and those places inside my skull are still tender. I keep flinching, having to force myself to look at what happens next, because I know things just get worse for pretty much every character, and now I’m really slowing down and describing the “worse.”

I needed a little restoration, and a little time off from the discomfort. Now it’s time to get back into the fray.

Over and out.

[1] This is the trope where a white boy is Better and Faster and Braver and More Super than any of the darker-skinned people he’s raised by/rescued by/comes into contact with, and ends up ruling them. The darker-skinned people are often, in this trope, conflated with animals/savagery somehow, which makes the whole thing patronizing as well as racist.