Skip to main content

Movie Review: "Storks" Is Pleasant But Uninspired

Starring the voices of Andy Samberg, Katie Crown, Kelsey Grammer, Ty Burrel, Jennifer Aniston
Written and directed by Nicholas Stoller

Reviewed by Paul and Patrick Gibbs 

Out of Four

We're suckers for animated fioms, especially animated animals, and tend to go easier on the lesser (i.e. non Disney/Pixar) animated films than most critics do. And Nicholas Stoller, writer and co-director of Storks, is responsible for what we consider two of the funniest screenplays in recent memory, 2011's The Muppets (which he co-wrote with Jason Segal) and its sequel,  Muppets Most Wanted. And yet for us, Storks was only okay.

The premise goes back to an old legend kids today only know if they've seen Dumbo (heck, that's the only reason we know it): storks delivering babies.  In the film's reality,  the storks actually ceased making these deliveries 18 years ago, and instead now make deliveries for, essentially a variation of Amazon. The company is run by a blustery bureaucrat named Hunter (voiced by Kelsey Grammer), who is about to be receive a promotion, and tells the lovable goofy Junior (Andy Samberg) that he can have Hunter's job if he'll fire Tulip (Katie Crown), an 18 year old human girl who was the last baby the storks tried to deliver and has lived with them since the delivery failed.

The story goes pretty much where you would expect it to, with nothing especially new or unexpected.  Of course that won't bother the children who are the movie's primary audience, and the quality animation and endearing character design go a long way. But, disappointingly, the film just isn't nearly as funny as you'd expect given the talent behind it. It's sufficiently amusing to kids, but there's not much there to make adults laugh.  This is puzzling when compared to Stoller's Muppets scripts, which were both funny and clever. Here he settles for tired tropes and simple gags that just don't hit the mark as well as they should, and the result is a film that certainly doesn't qualify as bad, but one which just doesn't inspire a great deal of enthusiasm.

Samberg's Junior is a likable protagonist, while Crown's Tulip is alternately lovable and genuinely annoying at times. Grammer is his usual blustery,  pompous self and Key and Peele are fairly amusing as the leaders of a wolf pack (though not as amusing as they're trying to be).  The character of Hunter's Pigeon Toady, as voiced by Steven Taylor Glickman,  is supposed to be humorously irritating, but only the second part of that works, and it works far too well. The uninspired but perfectly watchable film becomes a bit of an ordeal to sit through whenever he's on screen, and remember that this is coming from two guys so fond of animated creatures they're afraid to call Jar Jar Binks annoying because it might hurt his feelings.

All in all, Storks is a perfectly good diversion for kids, and the adults who go with them might be mildly amused. But in a year where we've had an abundance of quality animated films, this is a lesser effort, and considering the fact that we know its creative leader can do better, that's a shame.

The Bearded Trio - The Site For Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and John Williams




Popular posts from this blog

Did Paul Freeman Accidentally Eat A Fly In Raiders of the Lost Ark?

The Famous Indiana Jones Fly In Belloq's Mouth Scene.  Did It Really Happen? I've always wondered if Paul Freeman unintentionally consumed a fly in this scene in  Raiders of the Lost Ark ?  It's the scene where Indiana Jones shouts down to Bellosh...I mean Belloq and threatens to blow up the ark.  Did a fly go in his mouth? I remember watching this scene back in the early eighties and my ten year old mind thought he definitely had a snack while filming.  I recall talking about 'flygate' in my school playground at the time and the general consensus with my friends was that Freeman definitely had a sneaky snack. Paul Freeman talks about the famous 'fly' scene in an interview with  and settled 'flygate:' This is a bit of a dicey question so don’t get too upset. (Laughs) A movie’s always got bloopers in it, some have a lot, and some only have three or four. And the most remarkable blooper was right before the opening of th

Star Wars VII Movie Poster - Every End Is A New Beginning

Star Wars VII Movie Poster Just saw this Star Wars VII movie poster on Kyle Newman's Facebook fee d.  The poster is by  Lyndon Berresford and Paul Bateman.  I am loving this.  Who do you think the two characters are?  Lando and Leia?  Han and Leia's children? Have you seen other Star Wars VII movie posters?  Let me know. Rob Wainfur @welshslider

Pinewood Studios To Expand To The Usa

BBC News have reported that Pinewood Studios are to expand to the USA.  This is great news for the famous studio that is rich in movie history. UK film studio Pinewood Shepperton has announced plans to build its first sound stages in the United States. The Pinewood Atlanta complex will be built on 288 acres of land south of Atlanta, Georgia, as a joint venture with a US investment company. Georgia has been among the US states drawing film-making away from Hollywood with tax incentives in recent years. The deal is the latest sign of expansion at Pinewood, the home of the James Bond franchise. Earlier this month it announced a joint venture with a Chinese media group, potentially giving it access to the fast-growing Chinese market. Read the full article here. THE BEARDED TRIO ON FACEBOOK THE BEARDED TRIO ON TWITTER THE BEARDED TRIO ON GOOGLE+