IMDb > Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943)
Tarzan's Desert Mystery
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Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943) More at IMDbPro »

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Up 31% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Edward T. Lowe Jr. (screenplay)
Carroll Young (from a story by)
View company contact information for Tarzan's Desert Mystery on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
16 March 1944 (Mexico) See more »
Tarzan Defies Enemy Agents . . . in a hot-bed of Intrigue and Danger ! See more »
A letter from Jane, who is nursing British troops, asks Tarzan's help in obtaining a malaria serum extractable from jungle plants... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Johnny Sheffield obituary
 (From The Guardian - Film News. 27 October 2010, 11:01 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
A Tarzan adventure in a desert with mysterious creatures and plants. See more (18 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Johnny Weissmuller ... Tarzan

Nancy Kelly ... Connie Bryce

Johnny Sheffield ... Boy

Otto Kruger ... Paul Hendrix
Joe Sawyer ... Karl Straeder
Lloyd Corrigan ... Sheik Abdul El Khim

Robert Lowery ... Prince Selim
Frank Puglia ... Magistrate
Philip Van Zandt ... Undetermined Secondary Role (scenes deleted) (as Phil Van Zandt)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Bobby Barber ... Turban Vendor (uncredited)
John Berkes ... Charlie (uncredited)

John Dehner ... Prince Ameer (uncredited)
Dice ... Jaynar (uncredited)

Frank Faylen ... Achmed (uncredited)

George J. Lewis ... Ali Baba Hassan (uncredited)

Nestor Paiva ... Prison Guard (uncredited)

Syd Saylor ... Bewildered Camel Herdsman (uncredited)

Directed by
Wilhelm Thiele  (as William Thiele)
Writing credits
Edward T. Lowe Jr. (screenplay) (as Edward T. Lowe)

Carroll Young (from a story by)

Edgar Rice Burroughs (based upon characters created by)

Produced by
Sol Lesser .... producer
Kurt Neumann .... associate producer
Original Music by
Paul Sawtell (music score)
Cinematography by
Russell Harlan (photography) (as Russ Harlan)
Harry J. Wild (photography) (as Harry Wild)
Film Editing by
Ray H. Lockert (film editor) (as Ray Lockert)
Art Direction by
Ralph Berger 
Hans Peters 
Set Decoration by
Victor A. Gangelin (interiors) (as Victor Gangelin)
Stanley Murphy (interiors)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Derwin Abrahams .... assistant director
Sound Department
Bailey Fesler .... sound technician
Jean L. Speak .... sound technician
Ben Johnson .... stunt double (uncredited)
Paul Stader .... stunts (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Elmer Ellsworth .... wardrobe
Music Department
C. Bakaleinikoff .... musical director
Other crew
Ralph McCutcheon .... horse trainer (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
  • I.A.T.S.E.  this picture made under the jurisdiction of (as I.A.T.S.E.)

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan's Desert Mystery" - USA (complete title)
See more »
70 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Finland:K-12 | Norway:7 (1970) | Sweden:Btl | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #9117) | West Germany:6 (nf)

Did You Know?

Tarzan fights Nazis for WW2 storyline.See more »
Factual errors: When Tarzan and Boy walk across the hot, sandy desert on their way to get the medicine from the jungle, they both walk across it in their bare feet. Sand often gets extremely hot out in the desert, and both of them should be suffering from burns on the bottoms of their feet, but they do not.See more »
Boy:Well Tarzan, what are we waiting for?
Tarzan:Boy and Cheeta go back to escarpment now.
Boy:Aw Tarzan, be a sport. We wanna help you get the fever medicine.
Tarzan:Jane asks Tarzan to get fever medicine. Boy stay home.
Boy:Well Tarzan, I don't remember reading anything like that in Jane's letter.
Tarzan:Then Boy read letter again.
[hands letter to Boy]
Boy:Well, let's see.
[pretends to read]
Boy:Of course you must not think of leaving Boy and Cheeta this time. The great desert will be very educational for them.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Edited from Tarzan Triumphs (1943)See more »


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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
A Tarzan adventure in a desert with mysterious creatures and plants., 6 June 2006
Author: physyu from Myanmar

Edger Rice Burrough's Tarzan was never meant to be muscular although as portrayed by Elmo Lincoln, Frank Merrill and Gordon Scott's Tarzan was indeed very much so. Young Johnny Weissmuller's Tarzan was lithe, strong and athletic with a beautiful manly body. In Tarzan and the Desert Mystery, Johnny Weissmuller looked big , strong and the way he lifted the Arabs --accompanying the American girl magician Nancy Kelly who was providing a free performance in the middle of a desert-- and threw them by mistake despite protests from Kelly was very impressive and entertaining. The second scene that was equally entertaining was the scene in which Tarzan was attacked after being falsely accused of stealing the stallion. Here we find Tarzan throwing the opponents about like little toys and fighting like a majestic lion. I think only Weissmuller could give such a splendid performance. He looked every inch a Tarzan and I should think he was much better built than perhaps Lincoln and Scott. Scott had weight lifter's build and became an extremely believable Tarzan in later films and Lincoln so long as he was in the jungle proved to be a very popular Tarzan with the moviegoers. Nancy Kelly's performance was very humorous and at times very very perceptive. Johnny Sheffield's performance as boy was as to expected , excellent. Cheeta was a great fun to watch and interestingly besides the usual quota of animal extras viz lions, elephants, wild horses, monkeys a number of mysterious prehistoric creatures were included and also a gigantic spider. The stallion that Tarzan rode added an extra element of interest and a novel feature and instead of stampeding wild elephants we have horses stampeding in this movie. The story is quite what one could expect if one is familiar with Newspaper Tarzan Comic Strips as drawn by Hogarth, Manning, Celardo and Foster. These news paper comic strips gave Tarzan a personality and ultimately made it popular enough to be made into movies. The story is a good change but what one could expect for a good Tarzan yarn. Another feature one notices in this film is instead of the " repetitious" vine swinging one finds in in some of excellent MGM films the vine swinging is a refreshing change in this RKO film. I enjoyed it very much and it is an excellent fare for the whole family. I have seen it several times.

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