April 13, 2016

The Emperor's New Groove.

Review #790: The Emperor's New Groove.

David Spade (Emperor Kuzco), John Goodman (Pacha), Eartha Kitt (Yzma), Patrick Warburton (Kronk), Wendie Malick (Chicha), Kellyann Kelso (Chaca), and Eli Russell Linnetz (Tipo) Directed by Mark Dindal.

The movie actually has a deep production history, with development of what at first was called Kingdom of the Sun beginning in 1994. However, the movie soon spiraled from being a romantic comedy musical in the style of The Prince and the Pauper to a buddy film. A documentary of the process (and its retooling) was even made, and while I do appreciate the movie that was ultimately made, it is slightly bittersweet, with regards to the movie that was never made. Anyway...

I vaguely remember watching bits and pieces of the movie once (or twice) during one of my classes around 8 years ago, and I remember it certainly seemed to do its job to the class (I was a kid, cut me a break for not remembering more about it). Years later, I finally get a chance to watch it again, and it's interesting how short the movie is, running in at only 78 minutes. The movie certainly has a simple structure, with a narcissistic lead that has to redeem himself, with a good-hearted buddy, and so on. But at least it can be said the movie keeps itself contained to only a few batch of important characters, and it never really feels like the movie is padding itself out. The way that it handles itself as a light-hearted buddy film is the main selling point, because it manages to have a good degree of fun with itself, from the main character recapping and narrating over the first half of the movie (complete with barbs) to a chase scene montage, complete with a map marked by dotted lines...which the characters notice. The main four cast members seem to have a good time (particularly Kitt, who wonderfully hams up as the villain), and the movie runs as a good pace with just enough flair and quickness to make for a relatively decent experience. Is it a great movie? No, but it doesn't need to be.

Guess what? It's time for another countdown, this time to Review #800, starting with this review.

Overall, I give it 8 out of 10 stars.

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