Watch Howard the Duck
- 1 hr 50 min
In 1986, George Lucas produced a film adaptation of the Marvel Comics character Howard the Duck, directed by Willard Huyck. The film stars Lea Thompson as Beverly Switzler, a rock singer, Jeffrey Jones as Dr. Walter Jenning, and Tim Robbins as Phil Blumburtt. The film opens with Howard, a young duck from a planet populated by anthropomorphic ducks, being transported to Earth by an experimental laser beam. He lands in Cleveland and quickly attracts the attention of Beverly, who takes him back to her apartment. However, Howard soon becomes the target of an evil scientist, Dr. Walter Jenning, who is using the same laser beam to open a portal to another dimension.
Howard and Beverly team up with Phil Blumburtt, an overeager scientist with a penchant for conspiracy theories, to track down Jenning and put an end to his nefarious plans. Along the way, they encounter a variety of bizarre and humorous characters, including a diner owner who looks like a teddy bear and a punk rocker who is also a ninja.
Despite its unusual premise and low box office earnings, Howard the Duck has since become a cult classic, known for its quirky humor and impressive animatronics. The film features impressive special effects for its time, including fully articulated puppet ducks and a massive stop-motion creature that terrorizes the city.
One of the standout performances in the film comes from Lea Thompson, who delivers a strong portrayal of Beverly Switzler. Thompson brings a depth and complexity to her character that elevates the film beyond a simple sci-fi romp. She imbues Beverly with a sense of humor, independence, and intelligence that makes her easy to root for.
Jeffrey Jones also delivers a memorable performance as the film's villain, Dr. Walter Jenning. Jones brings a sense of gravitas and menace to the role, making Jenning a formidable foe for Howard and his friends. Jones' performance is both campy and terrifying, perfectly embodying the film's blend of humor and horror.
Tim Robbins rounds out the core cast with his portrayal of Phil Blumburtt. Robbins plays Blumburtt as a bumbling but lovable character, providing some of the film's funniest moments. His unwavering enthusiasm for conspiracy theories and alien encounters serves as a comedic foil to Howard's dry wit.
Overall, Howard the Duck is a weird and wacky film that's not afraid to take risks. Despite its commercial failure, the film has become a cult classic with a dedicated fan base. Its unique blend of humor, sci-fi, and horror has inspired countless imitators and cemented its place in pop culture history.
Howard the Duck is a 1986 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 50 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 4.7 and a MetaScore of 28.