Ending Disney’s streak of traditionally animated musicals in the 1990s, The Emperor’s New Groove was a completely different animal from previous classics like Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, and Mulan. It was straight-up buddy comedy with just the right amount of pathos. Possibly Disney’s funniest movie, The Emperor’s New Groove has more jokes, both visual and verbal, than you can shake a stick at. From Kronk’s ineptitude and his arguments with his shoulder angels to the continual comments about Yzma’s age, the laugh-out-loud moments just keep on coming throughout the 78-minute runtime. By the end, the filmmakers even throw in plot holes and serendipity just to point them out for a laugh.
The voice acting is also some of the best I’ve heard. David Spade is appropriately unlikable yet still funny as Kuzco the talking emperor llama (whose character change is quite satisfying), John Goodman is warm-heartedly sympathetic as Pacha, Eartha Kitt fills Yzma’s every line with scratchy-voiced charisma, and Patrick Warburton is an absolute hoot as Kronk, so much so that he got his own funny but not-as-good sequel in Kronk’s New Groove.
While it would have been nice to see the originally planned film, a typical Disney musical with songs by Sting, The Emperor’s New Groove nonetheless deserves a spot on my list just for the unceasing humor. I remember that Yzma’s transformation at the end left me in stitches the first few times I saw it. It may not be the instant classic that so many other Disney films were, but it’s entertaining from start to finish.Best line: (Pacha, with Kuzco the llama dressed as a woman in a diner) “It’s our honeymoon.” (monotone waitress) “Bless you for coming out in public.” VC’s best line: (Pacha) “What’d they look like?” (Townsman #1) “Well, there was this big guy, and this older woman who was… well, how would you describe her?” (Townsman #2) “Ah, scary beyond all reason?” (Townsman #1) “Yeah, that’s it.”
Artistry: 3 Characters/Actors: 9 Entertainment: 9 Visual Effects: 5 Originality: 7 Watchability: 7 Other (I just like other films better): -6 TOTAL: 34 out of 60
Next: #274: Hugo
© 2014 S. G. Liput