4.6/10
39,230
295 user 91 critic

Howard the Duck (1986)

A sarcastic humanoid duck is pulled from his homeworld to Earth where he must stop a hellish alien invasion with the help of a nerdy scientist and a cute struggling female rock singer who fancies him.

Director:

Willard Huyck

Writers:

Steve Gerber (Marvel comics character: Howard the Duck), Willard Huyck | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
1,922 ( 176)

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From $3.99 (HD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lea Thompson ... Beverly Switzler
Jeffrey Jones ... Dr. Walter Jenning
Tim Robbins ... Phil Blumburtt
Ed Gale ... Howard T. Duck
Chip Zien ... Howard T. Duck (voice)
Tim Rose ... Howard T. Duck
Steve Sleap Steve Sleap ... Howard T. Duck
Peter Baird Peter Baird ... Howard T. Duck
Mary Wells Mary Wells ... Howard T. Duck
Lisa Sturz Lisa Sturz ... Howard T. Duck
Jordan Prentice ... Howard T. Duck
Paul Guilfoyle ... Lieutenant Welker
Liz Sagal Liz Sagal ... Ronette, Cherry Bomb
Dominique Davalos ... Cal, Cherry Bomb
Holly Robinson Peete ... K.C., Cherry Bomb (as Holly Robinson)
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Storyline

A scientific experiment unknowingly brings extraterrestrial life forms to the Earth through a laser beam. First is the cigar smoking drake Howard from the duck's planet. A few kids try to keep him from the greedy scientists and help him back to his planet. But then a much less friendly being arrives through the beam... Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Trapped in a world he never made. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 August 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Howard See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,070,136, 3 August 1986, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$16,295,774

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$21,667,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Final theatrical feature film directed by Willard Huyck. See more »

Goofs

During the final scene, in which Beverly's band is playing on stage, there is a mirror as part of the stage in which the crew and camera can be seen occasionally. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Jenning: You are about to make history a second time, my little friend.
Howard T. Duck: Thanks. But once was plenty.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the UK two cuts totalling 46 secs were made to secure a PG rating. One is of Lea Thompson pulling a condom out of Howard's wallet, the other is of the bad guy sticking his tongue in a car cigarette lighter socket to recharge himself. The scene with the condom was left intact on the film's television premiere on the BBC. Although the cuts were fully restored in 2008 for the 12-rated Metrodome release the same company reissued the film later in the year with a PG certificate, and this release lost 52 secs of cuts to photo shots in a sex magazine and a scene where Howard works in a sleazy sauna parlour. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Your Studio and You (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Don't Turn Away (Reprise)
Written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Wills
Performed by Lea Thompson, Holly Robinson Peete (as Holly Robinson), Dominique Davalos and Liz Sagal
Produced by Thomas Dolby
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Cheesy, lame, but still a lot of fun
20 February 2004 | by Smells_Like_CheeseSee all my reviews

Howard the Duck is a film that I grew up with, I was only a 1 year old when it was released, but my mom and I would watch it together all the time. I think that's the reason why this movie is just special to me. But still I watch this movie and honestly it's not as bad as most people exaggerate it to be, granted it's not Citizen Kane, but it's still awesome to watch. I think people take the movie too seriously, first off look at the title, if you're expecting a duck to deliver an Oscar worth performance, get your head checked, second people make fun of the "flirting" between the duck and Lea Thompson, which was meant to be a joke, not real. Third, the ending, people make fun of it and it's being over the top, I personally found it to be so funny and still a ton of fun to watch, how could you not get a kick out of Jeffrey Jones' performance? He was awesome! If you wanna know what the movie is about, read on before you see the movie so you can get a good idea and judge for yourself.

The film begins late at night in "Duckworld," which is a version of planet Earth, but with talking ducks living there in place of human beings. As Howard tries to relax, his armchair begins to vibrate violently, and Howard and the chair are promptly yanked through outer-space, all the way to Cleveland on planet Earth. After ending up in an oil drum, Howard hears a fight involving a woman and two thugs pretending to be her fans. Howard uses his skills of "Quack Fu" to defend her. Intimidated by a talking duck, the thugs scamper. The woman, Beverly, thanks Howard and, feeling sorry for him because he has no warm and dry place to sleep, invites him to her apartment. The next day, Beverly takes Howard to see Phil Blumburtt , who she believes is a scientist that can help Howard get back to Duckworld. It turns out Phil is actually a janitor at a museum and Howard, infuriated with Phil's charade. A few days later, Dr. Walter Jenning , and Larry who explain to Howard that they were doing a routine procedure at the lab, only for the experiment to go out of control, causing the laser to hit Howard's planet instead. Howard suggests he can be sent back to Duckworld if the laser can be put into reverse. He is taken to the Dynatechnics lab alongside Beverly, only to find out on arrival that the laser is seriously damaged due to another explosion. The explosion brings down a "Dark Overlord" who is not seen by the audience at the time, and takes over Jenning's body. Howard and Beverly see Dr. Jenning, but he is in the process of being taken over by the Dark Overlord. With Howard and Beverly both unaware of this, they escape in Jenning's car onto the freeway with him driving dangerously due to his worsening possession. They stop outside a diner just before he is fully taken over. Inside the Diner, the Overlord explains his attempts to call forth his fellow aliens from the Nexus of Sominus so that they may take over the world.

Honestly, yeah the plot is a bit much to grasp, but cut the movie some slack, it's about a duck for goodness' sake! For me, it still makes me laugh and I have a ton of fun watching it. I loved seeing Tim Robbins and Howard trying to get to the factory to destroy Jeffrey Jones before he could take over the world, Tim was absolutely hilarious! Yes there are a few things about this movie that are over the top but I still think that this movie is just mindless entertainment. Hey how many movies do we have where a duck saves Planet Earth? Hmm, I guess this is the only one; but give the movie a fair chance, it's a cute one.

7/10


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