storks-posterStorks delivers. Okay, now that I’ve gotten that over-used pun out of the way, I’ll move on. The movie is a solid, entertaining animated flick that will keep kids engaged without boring adults to tears. It’s not as good as Zootopia, but it’s way better than the likes of The Wild Life, Ratchet and Clank, Norm of the North, and other animated misfires lobbed at us this year, and I personally liked it better than The Secret Life of Pets. Storks relies on a solid formula of good story, wacky adventure, quirky characters, and a sweet exploration of the true meaning of friends and family. Awwwwww.

Here’s the gist: Storks used to deliver babies, but now they deliver packages of another sort for a global internet retail giant (wink, wink, nod, nod to Amazon). One of the hard-working delivery storks, Junior (Adam Sandberg), is slated for promotion come Monday, assuming nothing goes wrong over the weekend. Guess what? Stuff goes wrong! First off, Junior is supposed to fire the orphan Tulip (Katie Crown), the only human on Stork Mountain, but he doesn’t have the heart to go through with it. Instead, he exiles Tulip to the long-dormant baby-ordering part of the plant, where she finds a kid’s letter requesting a baby brother and accidentally activates the baby-making machine. Out plops a cute little baby girl. Oops.

Junior and Tulip then set off on an adventure to deliver the unauthorized baby to a human couple (Ty Burrell and Jennifer Aniston) before the big boss Hunter (Kelsey Grammar) finds out and crushes Junior’s dreams of ascending the corporate ladder. Junior and Tulip end up bonding over baby as their makeshift family battles several obstacles, including a hilariously annoying co-worker named Pigeon Toady (Stephen Kramer Glickman) and a pack of wolves led by Alpha and Beta (Key and Peele) that can morph into all sorts of things (“form of, a suspension bridge!”). It’s actually all quite clever. So if the kids are clamoring for a nice, simple animated flick, then Storks fits the bill (pun intended). Just be prepared to explain to them afterward where babies really do come from. Yeah, good luck with that.

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