A dearest friend of mine and I decided to take a trip down memory lane and watch George of the Jungle. Truthfully she hadn’t watched it although she knew the basic plot (inspired by the story of Tarzan).
When I was a kid I remember watching the movie with a younger cousin. At the time I found it very amusing and entertaining, not so much now. Watching it wasn’t what I expected. All the crazy stunts, fake animals, and style of narration became exasperating. I kept trying to find whatever it was that caused me so much delight as a child but had no luck. Figured it must have been all the foolishness. Another detail I hadn’t notice as a child was all the social and cultural stereotypical criticism: whites being superior to blacks and social class differences.
George of the Jungle is a movie that breaks traditional narrative structure. The narrator gets involved in the story, not only because he is also a character in it but because he changes the details as he goes. The characters say phrases created by the narrator and even have discussions with the almighty voice. It’s clearly somewhat entertaining in an unconventional way.
This month, on July 16, George of the Jungle celebrates its 20th anniversary (Congrats!). Not the best movie to watch as an adult but it still has cinematic value. Despite the frustration of realizing that it isn’t as great as I remember, it does bring back fond memories of my childhood; playing with my cousin, starting school, and best of all, no responsibilities. After all, I consider movies to be a way of capturing a moment of a person’s life and transforming it into a time capsule. It’s not until you open it (or in this case watch it) that you realize you have changed and grown.