IMDb > Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943)
Tarzan's Desert Mystery
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Edward T. Lowe Jr. (screenplay)
Carroll Young (story)
View company contact information for Tarzan's Desert Mystery on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
15 April 1944 (Sweden) 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:
Tarzan's mystery is like the desert: dry and lifeless. See more (17 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

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)
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 (story)

Edgar Rice Burroughs (characters)

Produced by
Sol Lesser .... executive producer
Kurt Neumann .... associate producer
Original Music by
Paul Sawtell 
Cinematography by
Russell Harlan  (as Russ Harlan)
Harry J. Wild  (as Harry Wild)
Film Editing by
Ray H. Lockert  (as Ray Lockert)
Art Direction by
Ralph Berger 
Hans Peters 
Set Decoration by
Victor A. Gangelin  (as Victor Gangelin)
Stanley Murphy 
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)

Production CompaniesDistributors

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)

Did You Know?

Continuity: During the sandstorm after their escape from the city, Tarzan and Boy can be seen wearing footwear of some kind, yet a moment later when they leave to seek shelter, they are both barefoot again.See more »
Movie Connections:
Edited from Tarzan Triumphs (1943)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Tarzan's mystery is like the desert: dry and lifeless., 22 July 2010
Author: BA_Harrison from Hampshire, England

Jane, who is away nursing troops in war-torn Europe, sends a letter to Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller) requesting some of his amazing healing jungle juice, which she believes will help cure soldiers who have contracted tropical diseases.

In order to obtain the plants necessary for the marvellous medicine, Tarzan, Boy (Johnny Sheffield) and Cheetah must travel beyond the desert town of Birherari to a perilous patch of jungle full of bizarre and deadly creatures. During their journey, the threesome team up with fast talking and feisty magician Connie Bryce (Nancy Kelly) who is on a covert mission to deliver a message to Prince Saleem of Birherari, warning him that his father's business associate Paul Hendrix (Otto Kruger) has been secretly plotting to take over the country by force.

A change of scenery injected a little life back into the Tarzan series when the ape-man went to New York, but here the new locale doesn't work so well: seemingly influenced by his arid and barren surroundings, Wilhelm Thiele's direction for his desert based action—which takes up the majority of the running time—is pretty dry and lifeless, and the film only flourishes when the movie finally moves to the lush jungle setting. Here, we are treated some of the most enjoyably daft moments of the series so far, with the brave ape man and his pals confronting prehistoric creatures (real lizards with 'sails' glued to their backs), a man eating plant, and a massive, thoroughly unconvincing spider that traps Boy in its over-sized web (made from rope); it's just a shame that the good stuff is so brief, and that it's such an arduous trek to get there.

I rate Tarzan's Desert Mystery a rather disappointing 5 out of 10 (the hilarious shonky spider almost earned the film another point, but Connie's continuous use of irritating '40s slang stopped me from being so generous).

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