J.D. Lafrance
The Emperor’s New Groove: 3-Disc Special Edition DVD Review

The Emperor’s New Groove: 3-Disc Special Edition

June 21, 2013

Director: Mark Dindal,
Starring: David Spade, John Goodman, Patrick Warburton, Wendie Malick, Eartha Kitt,

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DVD Review

J.D. Lafrance

The Emperor’s New Groove (2000) started off as a troubled production with Disney hiring two different directors to make their own movies. When one was finally fired, the surviving filmmakers gave the project a complete overhaul and managed to salvage things to the point where the final product received good reviews and decent box office.

Emperor Kuzco (Spade) was born and raised in the lap of luxury. His every whim is indulged, including his own accompanying theme song (by Tom Jones no less). Basically, he’s a spoiled brat. Kuzco’s advisor, the evil Yzma (Kitt) schemes and runs the country behind his back. So, he fires her and then proceeds to tell village leader Pacha (Goodman) that his home for six generations will be replaced for the emperor’s new pool house. With the help of her dim-witted assistant Kronk (Warburton), Yzma creates a magic potion that transforms Kuzco into a llama. Through an amusing twist of fate, Kuzco and Pacha team-up and help each other out. Hijinks ensue.

David Spade and John Goodman play well off each other with the former riffing on his jaded, cynical shtick and the latter playing a big-hearted slob. Also thrown into the mix is Patrick Warburton as a dumb henchman who bumbles his way through the movie.

The Emperor’s New Groove’s color scheme is vibrant with a nice contrast between the bright colors of Kuzco’s palace and the dark, lush greens of the jungle that surrounds Pacha’s village.

Kronk’s New Groove (2005) was the direct-to-video sequel of the popular animated 2000 movie. Kronk has settled down and opened his own restaurant, a pizza joint whose aromas captivate the inhabitants of the village. Everything is going great and he is living the dream. That is, until he gets an urgent llama-gram informing him that his father is coming to visit. His parent expects him to be married with kids, which Kronk has to find in time for his father’s visit. To make matters worse, Yzma has returned with a business proposition.

Fan favorite Kronk gets his own movie, but not to worry, the main characters from The Emperor’s New Groove are back. You can never have enough of Patrick Warburton and his ironic bombastic tone is a lot of fun.

Special Features:

The Emperor’s New Groove’s vibrant color schemes looks quite good as does the detail on this new Blu-Ray. The same can be said for Kronk’s New Groove, which also looks good and together they are significant upgrade from their respective DVD versions.

All of the extras for both movies can be found on their DVD copies and not on the Blu-Rays.

Not surprisingly, the bulk of the extras are for The Emperor’s New Groove.

There are five deleted scenes introduced by the movie’s producer and director. They explain why this footage was cut. We see more of Pacha and his village. We also get the movie’s original ending.

Also included is a music video for “My Funny Friend and Me” by Sting. The musician talks about how he got involved and provides brief insight into the creation of the song.

“Walk the Llama Llama” is a music video by Rascal Flatts that allows you to sing and dance along with the song.

“The Emperor’s Got Game” allows you to help save Kuzco by getting him back to the palace.

There are three behind-the-scenes featurettes including the research done to get the attention to detail for South America; a look at the people who provided the voices for the characters; and the CGI props that enhanced the hand-drawn characters.

There is an audio commentary by producer Randy Fullmer and director Mark Dindal. They are joined at various points by art director Colin Stimpson, character designer Joseph C. Moshiler, head of story Stephen Anderson, supervising animator, Kuzco Nik Ranieri, and supervising animator, Pacha Bruce W. Smith. Fullmer and Dindal take us through the movie, sharing anecdotes and talking about their intentions.

On Kronk’s New Groove, there is “Kronk’s Brain Game” where you have to help him get everything on his list before his dad shows up.

“Pyramid Scheme” has you try and make it through three levels by earning coins to win a new house.

“How to Cook a Movie” is hosted by Patrick Warburton and the movie’s directors. Done like a faux cooking show, they take us through the making of the movie.

J.D. is a freelance writer who is currently doing research for a book on the films of Michael Mann. He likes reading anything written by Jack Kerouac, James Ellroy, J.D. Salinger, Harlan Ellison or Thomas Pynchon. J.D. is currently addicted to the T.V. series 24 and enjoys drinking a lot of Sprite. This is not a blatant plug for the beverage but if they ever decided to give him a lifetime supply he certainly wouldn’t turn them down.
view all DVD reviews by JD Lafrance


Rating: 84%



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