I love this movie. I can talk along with most (maybe all) of it, and it still makes me giggle maniacally every time I watch it. If you don’t love this movie, you probably have some kind of chemical imbalance in your brain, and you might want to get that checked.
When the movie opens, Kuzko, the Emperor of an unnamed empire in Pre-Columbian South America, is a self-centered, spoiled brat. It’s the eve of his eighteenth birthday, and he’s planning on destroying a village to build a summer home as a present for himself.
Pacha is from the doomed town, and Kuzko sends for him to ask him where he gets the best sun so that Kuzko can approve a site for his pool. Pacha is furious, but there’s nothing he can do.
Meanwhile, Yzma, the Emperor’s Advisor is taking on more responsibilities than Kuzko wants her to have, so he fires her. She and her henchman Kronk plan to kill Kuzko so Yzma can take over.
Kuzko ends up a llama instead, and Pacha carts him out of the city, unaware of his presence.
Yzma and Kronk continue to plot against Kuzko while Pacha tries to find a shred of human kindness in the emperor. Pacha and Kuzko bond, discover Yzma’s treachery, and get back to the city, where after much ado Kuzko ends up a human again, Yzma ends up a kitten, and Pacha’s village is saved. Kuzko, now a wiser and kinder man, builds his summer home on the next hill over, and everyone lives happily ever after.
The genius of this movie is the humor. It’s so far over the top and silly, but so absolutely perfect. Yzma has a secret lab. Kronk has a shoulder angel and devil. The dialogue is always spot on and hilarious.
The setting is great, and the characters, for the most part, actually look Mesoamerican. This movie is wonderful in every way, and it makes the world a better place just by existing.