Why the road to El Dorado was bombed in 2000 (but is loved now)

Despite the involvement of Shrek and Pirates of the Caribbeancreators of, 2000s The Eldorado road was a box office flop that many critics hated when it first came out, so how did the anime adventure come to be loved more than twenty years after its initial flop? Released in 2000, The Eldorado road was an expensive flop when it was released. The story of two amoral adventurers who stumble upon the titular lost city of gold, The Eldorado road got mixed reviews and abominable box office returns despite an impressive cast and soundtrack from The Lion King hitmaker Elton John.


However, the years have been surprisingly good for The Eldorado road, which is experiencing some kind of revival online. The film has a huge fan base on the internet, many of whom consider the animated adventure as much of a classic as the more conventional success. Pirates of the Caribbean and Shrek films (both co-written by The Eldorado roadscreenwriters, Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott). This naturally led many critics to reconsider their original opinions on the film and left audiences wondering why The Eldorado road is now so well known despite the fact that it was a flop when it was released.

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Despite the success of its creators, The Eldorado road was widely criticized upon its release, with most critics accusing the film’s story of being too derivative and the animation style of being too modeled on the then recent success of Disney’s rebirth. However, these are not the only issues that have plagued The Eldorado road. There were also questions about critics who didn’t know who the film’s target audience was because, like so many critically hated cartoons before it, The Eldorado road included too much adult humor to be a kid-friendly Disney-style children’s film, but nowhere near mature enough to be considered adult animation. Now, however, The Eldorado road has been reassessed and seen in a better light, with those very flaws (the lush traditional animation, the mature jokes) being seen as the film’s strengths. So what has changed in the decades that have transformed the reception of The Eldorado road?

The Road To El Dorado was released at the wrong time

Prince of egypt

Released in 2000, The Eldorado road arrived at the wrong time for a traditional animated film. The market has been inundated in recent years by The Lion King 2: Simba’s Pride, Anastasia, Tarzan, Mulan, and the superficially similar historical action-adventure comedy The Emperor’s New Routine. Not only that, but also the growing number of 3D animated films that were starting to challenge the monopoly of the 2D animation industry. Pixar released another critically acclaimed 3D animated film every year, and even Dreamworks itself (which produced The Eldorado road) was pushing Antz, Shrek, and The prince of Egypt in an attempt to displace the monopoly of the animation industry from Disney.

However, The Eldorado road came out at the perfect time to be rediscovered by children who grew up with the film being a forgotten flop. After all, although financially unsuccessful, The Eldorado road was still successful enough to be seen by Gen Z, but not so big that it won many sequels, spin-offs, and reboots. Adult humor and really funny character comedy of The Eldorado road deserve cult status no more than, for example, equally mature but still child-friendly children Pirates of the Caribbean sequels, but the fact that the film was never overexposed means young viewers have fond memories of The Eldorado road and re-popularized the film accordingly. In contrast, the hit movies of the time were overused and turned into endless franchises, with many still producing spin-offs and sequels, preventing fans from being nostalgic for an ongoing project.

The Road To El Dorado’s impressive cast helped and hurt the film

Kenneth Branagh in Dunkirk

With Kevin Kline, Rosie Perez and Kenneth Branagh headlining, The Eldorado road has more impressive lineup than many live action comedies from the same era, and the talent from the cast transfers well to animation. However, while Kline and Brannagh were relatively well-known prominent men of the time, neither boasted of the influence of ShrekEddie Murphy’s and Mike Myers’ dream team. Freshly cleared Austin Powers and Dr Dolittle, Murphy and Myers were a couple of superstars at the height of their popularity, and neither The Eldorado roadthe voice cast of had something akin to the star power of Shrekall.

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However, this same apparent weakness helped increase the film’s popularity in the years to come. Animation veteran Frank Welker and cult actor Edward James Olmos have completed an already impressive cast, which means The Eldorado road didn’t rely on famous faces for all of his supporting roles. This allowed the film to age well thanks to strong performances while in contrast, its competitors like the Shrek the show looked at its pop culture influence and produced sequels that increasingly relied on stunts like Justin Timberlake instead of focusing on story and character.

The Road To El Dorado formula works better now than in 2000

Road to Eldorado

Just like his contemporaries Shrek and The Emperor’s New Routine, The Eldorado road used a classic buddy comedy setting for its story of two mismatched antiheroes forced to work together by circumstance. However, unlike those two successes, this Elliott and Rossio script relied less on anachronistic visual gags and more on the interaction between the two, highlighting the spiritual back and forth that would make the Shrek franchise equally appreciated. However, ShrekThe pop culture-based gags inevitably dated back to the film (although some viewers argued that their uniqueness gave the film a unique 2000s charm), while there is a timelessness to the allure of The Eldorado road which was then used as a model for the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

The contrast between Miguel’s cunning bravado and Tulio’s neuroses makes their back and forth strong enough to carry a live adventure, that is, the mind-blowing animation of The Eldorado road and its charming soundtrack are the icing on an already impressive cake. It’s this character comedy that forms the basis of the film’s cult, whether in the form of Tumblr gifs, oft-cited lines, or fandom expedition. Miguel and Tulio’s charismatic interaction rises The Eldorado road from a solid family flick to a stellar adventure comedy for all ages, making the flop ripe for rediscovery by older viewers who were too young to understand its spirit the first time around.

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