Every Friday, our film critic Grace Kinsey will review a new release at the cinema. This week, she gives her verdict on Storks, an animated comedy.

After a mishap concerning a baby delivery, a company of storks turns to delivering parcels instead of human children. And so, when, 18 years later, a baby ends up at the storks' depot, it comes as a surprise to all, and colleagues Junior (Andy Samberg) and Tulip (Katie Crown) must deliver the infant.

Anyone would be forgiven for presuming that Storks – from Warner Brothers, makers of The Lego Movie – is a children's film: it's an animation, certificated U; its humour isn't crude, neither is its language foul; and at its most violent, Storks offers 'mild threat'.

However, upon watching Storks, it becomes clear that it is in fact parents who are the film's target audience – or perhaps it would be more appropriate to say the film's target.

The writer of Storks (Nicholas Stoller) clearly has a bone to pick with parents, and he does so with all the subtlety of a toddler having a tantrum.

At the start of the film, Junior – a high-achieving employee at the delivery corporation CornerStore – makes a swooping entrance on screen, and is greeted with much admiration by his peers. It then comes to light that Junior, despite being successful at work, is a loner; and while his colleagues spend time with their friends and families, he is forced to make the most of his own company.

Immediately, Junior's lack of work-life balance is paralleled by the introduction of a situation down on the ground, involving Mr and Mrs Gardiner, who prioritise their property business, and not their young son, Nate.

Though these scenes clearly have a message, it is at this point still tactfully expressed in comparison with later scenes, where things get rather extreme: Nate's dad has a very sudden change of heart about his priorities and so, on his son's request, plans to demolish part of their house, eventually gaining Mrs Gardiner's support.

Preaching aside, the script is scattered with witty one-liners; but again, this is heavily aimed at adults: the humour generally relies on either breaking the fourth wall, or poking fun at office stereotypes. The bickering banter between Junior and Tulip is entertaining and believable, though, and their relationship is heart-warming, especially when they bond over their extremely cute 'package' i.e. baby.

Whereas Junior and Tulip are appealing characters, the tiny and delusional Pigeon Toady is far from charming. He is in fact totally baffling and seemingly pointless. In his irrelevance he detracts from the main plot – which is pretty erratic in the first place – and this is emphasised on a visual and auditory level by the incongruous style of animation and bizarre voice-over used to bring Pigeon Toady to life.

There are some touching and funny moments in amongst Storks' often confusing and extreme storyline; but overall, if you want to spend quality time with the kids this weekend, put away the spreadsheets, forget about your targets, and don't go and see this film. You'll only feel guilty if you do.