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Tarzan's Desert Mystery (1943)

Passed | | Adventure | 16 March 1944 (Mexico)
With Jane still away for the war effort, Tarzan and Boy set off to retrieve rare medicinal herbs, only to run into an American messenger, Nazi spies, and the mysterious desert's treacherous fauna and flora. Will they make it in one piece?

Director:

Wilhelm Thiele (as William Thiele)

Writers:

Edward T. Lowe Jr. (screenplay) (as Edward T. Lowe), Carroll Young (from a story by) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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)
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Storyline

A letter from Jane, who is nursing British troops, asks Tarzan's help in obtaining a malaria serum extractable from jungle plants. Tarzan and Boy set out across the desert looking for the plants and wind up ruining a German's attempt to capture a wild horse. They arrive in an Arab city and rescue a stranded American lady magician, sentenced to be hanged for carrying a secret message to the Sheik. To obtain the plants, Tarzan must fight prehistoric monsters, Nazis, and so on. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Thrill after amazing thrill.. as savage hordes.. inflamed by crafty foes.. hunt down Tarzan and the lovely maiden he is guarding!.. See more »

Genres:

Adventure

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 March 1944 (Mexico) See more »

Also Known As:

Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan's Desert Mystery See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sol Lesser Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the movie was released in France after the war, the French version occult the Nazi intrigue to focus on ivory smugglers as the bad guys.instead of Germans and Hitler henchmen. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

Boy: [to Connie] You oughta see our house in the jungle. It's really peaceful.
Tarzan: Boy wish he were home, eh?
Boy: Well, uh... Why don't you come and live with us, Connie?
Connie Bryce: Oh! Listen, you better not tempt me.
[Cheeta dances for joy]
Boy: Cheeta says yes. What do you say, Tarzan?
Tarzan: Connie used to big cities. Connie get lonesome here soon.
Connie Bryce: I've been lonesome all my life.
[Uncomfortable with the conversation, Tarzan leaves]
Connie Bryce: What's the matter, Boy? Did I say something to upset him?
[...]
See more »

Connections

Followed by Tarzan and the Slave Girl (1950) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Jungle much safer than desert."
18 January 2015 | by utgard14See all my reviews

Tarzan's adventures at RKO continue in his second film there (eighth overall for Johnny Weissmuller). Having not been recast yet, Jane is once again absent. She's in England helping with the war effort. Yes, this is another WW2 Tarzan film, although much less controversial than the last one. This time, instead of slaughtering invading murderous Nazis who deserved every bit of what they got, Tarzan is sent by Jane on a mission to find plants needed to make a malaria serum. He takes Boy and Cheeta along and they journey across the Sahara desert, where they are joined by a spunky American magician (Nancy Kelly). They also encounter Nazi spies, man-eating plants, stock footage prehistoric lizards, and a deadly giant spider.

This one's a little different from previous entries in the series. It seems full-on aimed at kids with more fantastic elements and comic relief. But it's all good and the change in setting is nice. A solid cast for this one backing up Weissmuller and Johnny Sheffield -- Otto Kruger, Robert Lowery, Lloyd Corrigan, and Joe Sawyer. Pretty Nancy Kelly seems to be channeling Barbara Stanwyck at times. She's a lot of fun and even gets to sing "Boola Boola." Another enjoyable entry in the series, which lost something in production values when it left MGM but kept the adventure and charm of the earlier films. As was often the case, Cheeta steals the show.


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