In the late 1880s, an English couple and their infant son are shipwrecked off the Congolese coast. The adults build a treehouse but are killed by Sabor, a leopardess. Kala, a female western gorilla who recently lost her own child to Sabor, finds the human infant and takes it back to the jungle to raise him as if it were her own son, despite the disapproval of her mate, Kerchak, the leader of the gorilla troop. Kala names him Tarzan.
Years later, Tarzan begins to befriend other animals, including a young female gorilla named Terk and the paranoid male elephant, Tantor. Tarzan finds himself treated differently because of his different physique, so he makes great efforts to improve himself. As an adult, when Sabor attacks the gorillas again, Tarzan manages to kill the leopard with a crude spear he made. Having saved Kerchak’s life, Tarzan gains his reluctant respect.
The gorilla troop’s peaceful life is interrupted by the arrival of a team of human explorers from England, consisting of Professor Archimedes Q. Porter, his daughter, Jane, and their hunter escort Clayton. The explorers are looking to study gorillas. Jane accidentally becomes separated from the group and chased by a baboon troop, with Tarzan saving her out of curiosity. He realizes that she is human, just like he is. Jane leads Tarzan back to their camp, where Porter and Clayton both take great interest in him; the former in terms of scientific progress while the latter hopes to have Tarzan lead the group to the gorillas. Despite Kerchak’s warnings to be wary of the strangers, Tarzan continues to return to the camp, where Porter, Clayton, and Jane teach him to speak English properly as well as what the human world is like, and he learns that some humans can be trusted to the gorillas. He and Jane begin to develop feelings for each other. However, the English explorers have difficulty convincing Tarzan to lead them to the gorillas due to Tarzan’s fear of Kerchak thinking humans are strangers.
The explorers’ ship soon returns to retrieve them. Jane asks Tarzan to return with them to England, but Tarzan, in turn, asks Jane to stay with him when Jane says it is unlikely they will ever return. Clayton convinces Tarzan that Jane will stay with him forever as long as he leads them to the gorillas. Tarzan agrees and leads the trio to the nesting grounds while Terk and Tantor lure Kerchak away to avoid having him attack the humans. Porter and Jane are excited to mingle with the gorillas, but Kerchak returns and attacks the humans when he sees them. Tarzan is forced to hold Kerchak by letting the humans escape. Kerchak scolds Tarzan for disobeying him and betraying his family, Tarzan then runs away from the troop in fear due to Kerchak not knowing that some humans were trusted to his family. Kala takes Tarzan to the treehouse where she found him, shows him his true past, and says that she wants him to be happy whatever he decides. Tarzan puts on a suit that once belonged to his father, signifying his decision to go to England.
When Tarzan boards the ship with Jane and Porter the next day, they are all ambushed by Clayton and his traitorous band of stowaway thugs. Clayton actually hopes and plans to capture and sell the gorillas for a fortune now that he knows where the nesting grounds are and locks Tarzan, Jane, and Porter away to prevent them from interfering. Tarzan manages to escape with the help of Terk and Tantor, and he returns to the jungle. Clayton fatally shoots Kerchak and battles Tarzan across the treetops. Although Tarzan spares his life, he destroys Clayton’s rifle, causing the hunter to attack him with his machete. In the final struggle, Tarzan traps Clayton within a forest of vines. As Clayton struggles to cut himself free, one of the vines gets wrapped around his neck as he falls from the treetops, hanging and killing himself. Kerchak, with his dying breath, forgives Tarzan for not knowing that some humans can be trusted to his family, and names him the new leader of the gorillas as well as accepting him as his son. The rest of the gorillas are freed after scaring away the rest of Clayton’s men.
The next day, Porter and Jane prepare to leave on the ship while Tarzan stays behind with the gorillas. As the ship leaves shore, Porter encourages his daughter to stay with the man she loves, and Jane jumps overboard to return to shore; Porter shortly follows her. The Porters, now gifted with the ability to hear what animals are saying, reunite with Tarzan and his family and embark on their new life together.
Tarzan is a 90s classic filled to the rim with Easter eggs like Mrs. Potts, and the Neuchwanstein Castle. It also has classic songs from Phil Collins that will forever be in our hearts. It is a must see as a Disney fan but be warned certain parts are scary for kids. If you are interested in where all the Easter eggs are, please purchase my book or join our subscription.