A baby raised by gorillas grows up to be a lovable, vine-swinging klutz.
Based on the cartoon that spoofed Tarzan, this live-action adaptation has George of the Jungle meeting the wealthy Ursula Stanhope and venturing beyond his home in the wilds of Africa for the first time ever.
Brendan Fraser as George
I mean, DAMN. I was too young to fully appreciate this back in the day, but WOW, was this movie just an excuse to get Brendan Fraser shirtless and oiled up. There are no fewer than two scenes of women just fawning over the charming doofus that is George, because IT’S WHAT HE DESERVES. May we all be wise enough to document our hotness as thoroughly as Brendan Fraser had. (“A walking steak”, he called his younger self. More like the whole freaking meal.)
Leslie Mann as Ursula
Leslie Mann is SO CUTE and curly haired in this. And she’s somehow not insufferable as the rich white lady gallivanting in Africa because she wants to see some apes!
Thomas Haden Church as Lyle
THC was great at playing the snooty jerk fiancé; a truly punchworthy performance. (Plus, he’s the only one who reprised his role for the direct-to-video sequel — which is also on Disney+!) Although the only question is what did Ursula ever even see in him?
Holland Taylor as Beatrice
It’s future Stormy! She’s been in so many things in her storied career, but honestly, the strongest association I have with her lately is being coupled up with Sarah Paulson.
John Cleese as the voice of Ape
I don’t understand how an ape can speak flawless English but couldn’t teach George proper grammar, yet HERE WE ARE. Anyway, I now know John Cleese mostly for being a big ol’ racist on Twitter. (IMAGINE, voicing an anthropomorphic ape would not be the most undignified thing that a comedy icon does!)
Couch-Sharing Capability: High
Short and sweet at a brisk 92 minutes, this film doesn’t require a lot of brain power or attention span to keep up with. It’s perfect slumber party viewing for those who appreciate the male form, because — and I cannot stress this enough — Brendan Fraser.
Recommended Level of Inebriation: High
Even for a movie about a man raised by a talking ape, this shizz is highly nonsensical and illogical. It’s also fascinating by virtue of being something that Disney in its current iteration would never make, with the terribad green screen, painfully obvious stunt work, suuuuuper fake-looking animals, and all the tongue-in-cheekiness. (And, y’know, THEM CHEEKS.)
Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Decent
As it currently stands, before its original content really ramps up, nostalgia is obviously a major selling point of Disney+. George of the Jungle is exactly the kind of thing that you haven’t thought of in years, but now that it’s in front of you, you’re curious to check it out for the first time since you were a kid. Plus also Brendan Fraser at his peak hotness. (Seriously — and to the surprise of no one who’s read the entirety of this post — I’ve been evangelizing his hotness to everybody I know since I rewatched this.)