Movie Look: Howard the Duck

Short Summary: An anthromorphic duck is transported from his world to the human world and seeks to return home whilst trying to fit in with humanity in the meantime.

If you grew up in the 80s and early 90s, you were probably at least aware of Howard the Duck and how it became one of the biggest bombs in film history. Critics thrashed the film, it became recognized as one of the worst films ever made, George Lucas got a lot of heat due to producing it, and it showed up in that Animaniacs skit where they used the movie as a “bomb” to fight off people chasing them.

Whilst it’s nowhere near amongst the worst I’ve ever seen, it’s a pretty bad movie all the same and is easily the worst non-Star Wars/Indiana Jones related thing he was involved in. I know PG actually meant something back then, but when I think of a film centered on a creature that should have been animated like Howard, I picture something kid-friendly. Is it? Not unless you consider brothels where half-naked people make out in a tub, seeing boobs on a female duck (yeah they literally show that stuff), and practically every scene being shot in the dark as suitable for kids. So is the film for adults ala Meet the Feebles? I’m going to have to say “no”, because there’s a lot of basic cartoon logic being applied in this thing like the plane scene or the final climax or the fact that a human woman is in love with a duck (ew).

Basically, the film can’t choose a tone and alienates pretty much everyone – aside from diehard fans of the comics I guess – to the point that it becomes a two-hour drag. Why would you need two hours for a movie like this?

Howard

Verdict: I’ll admit the ending song was cool. I’ve got it on my music player so I don’t have to suffer through the length it’ll take for me to get to it by normal means.

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