Since swapping baby delivery for corporate packages, the storks have never seen such good profits. Tulip is a human orphan (whose homing beacon was accidentally destroyed, leaving her stranded) has been allowed to stay with the storks. When she inadvertently creates a baby, Tulip recruits up-and-coming stork, Junior, to help her deliver the baby to her new parents. Torn between helping Tulip and risking his career, Junior reluctantly agrees but with numerous characters wanting to stop them, can they make the journey to deliver the baby safely to her new family?
Storks (2016) – Director: Nicholas Stoller, Doug Sweetland
Running Length: 87 mins
Starring: Andy Samberg, Katie Crown, Kelsey Grammer
Genre: Animated, Comedy
Bringing their business up to date, Storks – who have always delivered babies – have changed their model and become the huge corporation, ‘Cornerstore’ which delivers a different but modern kind of precious cargo. Following the lives of enthusiastic, friendly but clumsy Tulip and the career-minded Junior, ‘Storks’ not only tackles the physical and emotional journeys these two characters take but also the way modern life affects children when their parents are workaholics.
While the plot is good, the comedy doesn’t quite hit the mark. Certain characters who are entirely created to be funny become more irritating than comedic and a lot of the jokes are almost there but are simply lacking. The pacing is good and the human characters – a family of parents who do nothing but work all day and a boy who yearns for their attention – bring a realistic element to the story which will resonate with many similar families without making the parents ‘bad’ or the child overly neglected which can only be a good thing.
‘Storks’ sets up an intriguing storyline with some great characters but doesn’t quite push itself into cementing a ‘family favourite’ status. With so much competition, it needs a much tighter grip on its direction and generally better comedy but it is by no mean’s a ‘bad’ movie; kids are going to enjoy it but it doesn’t come close to comparing to other animated movies on offer this year.
IS ‘STORKS’ SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN?
One of the Storks is obsessed with power and, as part of this, he terrorises small birds. Some are used as golf balls, being hit very hard with a club; one is squeezed as a stress ball and afterwards is repeatedly hit against a paddle, its eyes grow wide and it says ‘ow’ each time it is hit.
A baby starts to cry and a character is determined to ignore it despite it becoming more and more distressed. This only lasts a few seconds and another character steps up to help but the cries quickly turn to screams which could be quite upsetting for some kids.
Junior, Tulip and the baby are captured by some wolves. The two adult characters are bound and held upside down while the alpha and beta wolves argue over who will eat the baby. One says ‘I’m gonna devour this thing’ and the other says ‘I’m gonna bite her arm clean off’. While this dialogue is quite strong, it quickly makes way for some good comedy which balances this out.
A large, dishevelled character follows Tulip and Junior for most of the movie, their eyes are manic and for their first few appearances, the only thing they say is ‘my baby’ in an aggressive and menacing way.
There are a few emotional moments in the movie, particularly when characters have to say goodbye but these are the usual sad or heart-warming scenes that are in most kids movies so they should not be too distressing for kids.
CAN I SEE A CLIP?
‘Storks’ may not be perfect but it is good and brings a fresh new concept to the saturated animated market. We feel this movie is appropriate for all ages.
- Violence: 1/5 (some slapstick comedic violence and some cruelty to weak and vulnerable animals)
- Emotional Distress: 1/5
- Fear Factor: 1/5
- Sexual Content: 0/5
- Bad Language: 0/5
- Dialogue: 2/5
- Other Notes: Deals with themes of where babies come from, childhood, the evils of large corporations, ambition, family life and knowing what you want from life.
Words by Laura Record