Popularized by a Hans Christian Andersen during the 19th century, the myth of storks bringing babies in a basket and leaving them on doorsteps is one we’ve all heard. “Storks” capitalizes on this idea, but makes it their own, highlighting family and adventure. It’s sweet throughout, but it doesn’t quite reach its sentimental potential until the very end.
Storks used to deliver babies. That was their goal, their mission: To bring babies to waiting and excited families. But then they stopped after one of the storks got too attached and tried to keep one of the baby girls. Eighteen years later, Tulip (Katie Crown), having lost her way home, is living with the storks. She has a lot of energy, but every time she tries to help, she only succeeds in messing things up.
Now that the storks have moved from delivering babies to products (they work a lot like Amazon shipping), Junior (Andy Samberg), a top-notch stork, is looking to get a promotion. His first mission is to fire Tulip, but instead relegates her to letter-keeping duty. There, she receives a letter by a lonely little boy, Nate (Anton Starkman), who desperately wants a sibling. After an accident with the Baby Making Machine, Tulip and Junior find themselves responsible for the life of a baby girl. A baby girl they must deliver before anyone else finds out about their mistake.
Animations sometimes have a lot of expectation riding on their shoulders. They usually have to encompass several aspects: Fun, humor, sentimentality, lessons, etc. “Storks” doesn’t quite fit the bill when it comes to all of these, but perhaps that’s asking too much. What it lacks, it certainly makes up for in other areas. There isn’t a lot of humor, but there are some definite chuckle-worthy moments. The wolfpack (led hilariously by Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele) are one of the funnier highlights of the film.
Most of the film is based in adventure, running, and formulating plans to get to the destination. Once “Storks” reaches its middle, the story aspect begins to wane before finally picking up again in the final stretch. It’s really in the film’s finale that the sentimentality really comes to light, with the animation beautifully highlighting different kinds of families, a diversity and happiness that will pull at your heartstrings like no other part of the film does. Ultimately, “Storks” isn’t one for the books, but it does have its moments, some fun characters and a great message in the end.
Ultimately, "Storks" isn't one for the books, but it does have its moments, some fun characters and a great message in the end.