Skip to main content

See The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part Early

Movie Review: #Storks

Storks exceeds in cuteness but poops its diapers with a poor plot.

Review by Matt Cummings

We've witnessed a 2016 animated slate that's included the very good (Kubo and the Two Strings), the meh (Zoopotpia), and the truly awful (Norm of the North). For early Fall's Storks, we get something in the middle, filled with heartening moments, but disturbing in its overall premise.

In a world where storks like Junior (voiced by Andy Samberg) used to bring babies to homes, times have changed. After a delivery goes wrong - leaving the human Tulip (Katie Crown) without a home - the storks decide to enter the package delivery business. Over eighteen years, the company led by Hunter (Kelsey Grammer) has become a success, irregardless of Tulip's clumsy efforts to disrupt that. But for the human boy Nate (Anton Starkman), his desire for a brother leads him to write a letter to those very same storks, unaware of the company's new 'vision.' When Tulip accidentally starts the old baby-making machine, she produces a little girl that Junior must deliver. As Tulip tags along for the ride, the duo will realize that Baby's cuteness is their greatest strength, soothing even the vicious wolf pack (Key and Peale) with her big baby eyes, while Tulip struggles to locate her missing family using broken pieces of her tracking device.

Filled with a star-studded troupe of voice actors, Storks also features a venerated crew behind the camera, including Writer/Co-Director Nicholas Stoller and Producers Phil Lord and Chris Miller. And Storks also features some hilarious moments, especially when Key and Peale's wolves get going. In many ways, such genetics keeps things moving, even as its diaper fills up with two huge story gaps.

The real problem with Storks lies in its story. Essentially, it tackles two unpopular themes: unplanned pregnancies and babies that parents might no longer want. Throughout the film, we're led to believe that Baby is the only "order" and that the storks only need to deliver her before returning to package delivery; but it soon becomes apparent that hundreds of letters have been received over the years, which means that hundreds of parents are about to get children they may no longer want. I know that Stoller didn't envision such complications, but it illuminates a constant problem in film: the idea that we'll all "get it" regardless of the inconsistencies.

The unplanned pregnancy is another matter: when Nate tells mom and dad that he wants a baby brother, mom and dad tell him, "We're fine with one," which then sends the boy to mail the Storks. As the parents play along with Nate's construction project (another funny part in its wild ricketiness), we forget that the Gardeners don't really want another child. Of course, all of that changes when Baby arrives, but it's a truly diabolical concept. There's never a "I always wanted a little girl" conversation between Mr. and Mrs. Gardener: they just accept Baby as their own, in a scene that's a real tear-jerker. The epilogue is also incredibly heart-warming, but by then the damage has already been done. Parents will have a hard time rationalizing these issues to their older kids, but young ones will lap up the big eyes of our characters and the physical comedy behind Junior's performance.

Voice acting is very good, with Aniston and Burrell strangely playing smaller roles here. It's the story between Junior and Tulip that dominates Storks, and the young actress handles it very well. Crown's voice comes alive as the overly-positive Tulip, while Samberg's sixth run in an animated movie is perhaps his best. Tulip's story reflects a common theme of abandonment (or threat of) in children's animation, which when done correctly produces instant classics like Toy Story 2, Bambi, and even Mr. Peabody & Sherman. Storks does not fall into this category, but it's an enjoyable time, so long as you stay away from any logic about what you're actually watching.

Storks might be an early Fall surprise, based solely on its cuteness and a rather touching ending. But it's likely that parents will have a hard time wrapping their heads around the many negative connotations such as unwanted pregnancies and babies that parents asked for a long time ago. Kids will love the film, but might ask similar questions down the road. Be ready for that one.

Storks is rated PG for mild action and some thematic elements and has a runtime of 89 minutes.

Discuss this review with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms, and follow author Matt Cummings at @mfc90125.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Giveaway: @SwissArmyMan Prize Pack

In celebration of Swiss Army Man opening this Friday, we were provided with an Awesome giveaway for our fans out there.



See how to enter after the Jump...

Prize pack will include a large Manny beach towel and a tote bag



Email us at giveaways@sandwichjohnfilms.com
Subject-Swiss Army Man
Name & mailing address

Outrageously fun and deeply affecting, Swiss Army Man is a gonzo buddy comedy that is the feature film debut of acclaimed music video directors Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan (collectively known as DANIELS, and responsible for the visionary “Turn Down For What” video, among many others). Bursting with limitless creativity in both form and content, Swiss Army Man goes from the absurd to the emotional to the whimsical to the profound and back again.

Hank (Paul Dano) is stranded on a deserted island, having given up all hope of ever making it home again. But one day everything changes when a corpse named Manny (Daniel Radcliffe) washes up on shore; the two become fast friends…

Enter For A Chance To Win Run Of Engagement Pass To See COLD PURSUIT In Phoenix

Enter For A Chance To Win Run Of Engagement Pass To See COLD PURSUIT in Phoenix.

COLD PURSUIT, an action thriller infused with irreverent humor, stars Liam Neeson as Nels Coxman, a family man whose quiet life with his wife (Laura Dern) is upended following the mysterious death of their son. Nels’ search for justice turns into a vengeful hunt for Viking (Tom Bateman), a drug lord he believes is connected to the death. As one by one each of Viking’s associates “disappear,” Nels goes from upstanding citizen to ice-cold vigilante, letting nothing — and no one — get in his way.

E-mail us giveaways@sandwichjohnfilms.com
Subject-COLD PURSUIT-Phoenix
Name & address.

www.ColdPursuit.movie
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ColdPursuitMovie
Twitter: http://twitter.com/ColdPursuit
Instagram: www.instagram.com/ColdPursuitMovie
#ColdPursuit

In theaters February 8th

Discuss this with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms Please Leave A Comment-

WHAT MEN WANT Girls’ Night Out Screenings. See It First

Paramount Pictures announced today that on Wednesday, February 6th, fans at select theatres in the U.S. will have the chance to attend paid WHAT MEN WANT Girls’ Night Out Screenings.

Fans who participate in this one-day only event will get the chance to grab their friends for a fun night out and see the film on the big screen before it opens nationwide on Friday, February 8th. Tickets will be on sale for the prevailing price at participating locations, and each paid admission includes a ticket to the movie, bonus content and a free WHAT MEN WANT cocktail glass at all participating theatres - while supplies last. Some circuits will offer special concession deals, specialty beverages themed around the movie, and/or more. Offers will vary from circuit to circuit and theatre to theatre.

Showtime will be 7:00PM at all participating locations, with 335 theatres participating in over 70 markets. Over 200 of the screenings to take place at theatres with bars and/or with beer/wine & froz…