Originally this movie was supposed to be released under the name of Kingdom of the Sun, director by Mark Dindal and Roger Allers, the latter being a co-director of The Lion King. It was going to be a more traditional Disney adventure musical. Unfortunately the studio and Allers didn't see eye to eye, and eventually the whole idea was scrubbed and the existing material was turned into a buddy comedy.And as far as saving jobs go, they could have done a lot worse. You can definitely see that they had to cut a lot of corners to get the film out on schedule, but the movie has a lot of style, great sense of humour and very likable characters. It's one of the funniest Disney films I've ever seen - if not THE funniest - and stands out from the rest of the canon.The basic premise is that an Incan emperor named Kuzco gets turned into a llama after he fires his royal adviser, Yzma, who happens to be a sorceress of some talent - aren't they all. And now Kuzco has to get back into his palace in order to turn back into a man. The only problem is that the only man who can help him is also the chief of the village he intends to raze to the ground in order to build a summer home for himself. Not a very complicated plot as far as Disney films go, but it's the comedy that brings people back to this film. And that works beautifully. All four of the main characters have very good voice actors and they all have great chemistry together. The film also takes full advantage of its animated nature, giving us some really imaginative scenarios and gags.The only real problem I have is that the plot is very predictable and that the animation, while working very well in terms of comedic value, does look kind of cheap by Disney standards. Plus, while I enjoy the fact that Kuzco starts out very unorthodox for a Disney lead, his eventual character development is about as clichéd as you can get.Still, I do like the film a lot and it's an easy recommendation for anyone that enjoys Disney and for anyone that appreciates light-hearted comedies.
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