Storks may center on a baby-making factory, but is it as silly as it sounds? Read our movie review for all the hilarious details:
Storks exists in a cartoon universe where babies come from the sky and are delivered by the titular birds. But the human race seems to have gone back to making babies the old fashioned way when the storks decided to abandon their original job in favor of package delivery.
Favoring an Amazon-style service, the storks are now seen more as drones than deliverers of babies. I guess smartphones trump the miracle of life coming down from the skies.
At their headquarters of Stork Mountain, now built with an added-on shipping factory for Cornerstore.com, harbors one last child from the baby-making factory. No, seriously, there’s literally a mystical baby factory designed to churn out babies with wild hair colors of pink, purple and green. It’s apparently powered by crystals or something (storks’ words, not mine).
Labeled an orphan after losing her parents’ address, Tulip (Katie Crown) has been living as the only human of the stork community, finding some sort of kinship with the minority workers of the non-flying employee birds. When Tulip reaches the age of 18, she can apparently be both relinquished and fired from the stork operation.
The task of getting rid of Tulip is bestowed upon Junior (Andy Samberg), a nervously dedicated stork who is due for a major promotion if he can complete this one task. Lacking the heart to sack Tulip, Junior stuffs her into a do-nothing job of managing the baby requests, which have been absent for years. But when one child discovers the instructions for requesting a baby sibling, bound by the same logic as Santa Claus, Tulip starts up the old baby factory and produces a pink-haired child to be delivered. Fearing for his career, Junior teams up with Tulip to deliver the baby to its rightful parents.
As the second CGI feature from Warner Animation Group, Storks doesn’t quite have the same level of ingenuity in their previous picture The LEGO Movie, but does have the same zip and wit. Thanks to the comedic eye and timing of writer/co-director Nicholas Stoller (Neighbors, Forgetting Sarah Marshall), the madcap nature of this buddy picture has a surprising amount of smarts past all its frenetic slapstick and endless bantering.
After a lightning-fast first act, I found myself slowly getting into the world of the storks and their business. The manic nature of the comedy is a bit of a blessing for this type of story that doles out exposition over time. The story slowly reveals the methods for delivering babies, including why the babies were contained to isolation pods for prevention of emotional attachment.
I found myself more engaged with the story trying to decipher how humans have interacted with the storks and what the history was in the transition to package delivery. Just enough of this industry is exposed to be interesting without becoming overbearing and over-explained. I didn’t expect such world building from a rather zany movie paced at a level to distract even the most fidgety of children.
Though the gags are mercilessly shot out at the rate of a machine gun, their absurdity did make me laugh quite a few times. In particular, a hungry wolf pack, the leaders voiced by comedic duo Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele, is so well organized in their hunts that they can form any mode of transportation as though they were Transformers. When our heroes believe they have lost the wolves after cutting down a bridge between them, the wolves band together to form a bridge. Not just any bridge, but a suspension bridge. They later form a car when trying to catch up on a shipping dock. Not just any car, but a minivan with a baby seat. I can only imagine what type of train they might form.
While all the voices are rather solid, I found myself digging Kelsey Grammer the most as the sinister stork CEO Hunter. Nobody but Kelsey could make a line such as “I’m still going to destroy the baby factory” sound both hilarious and menacing. My respect for him as an actor has greatly increased.
Read more to see the rest of the movie review for Storks and watch the trailer: