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The original: 

Howard The Duck (1986)


Directed by: 

Willard Huyck (Best Defence, French Postcards, Messiah of Evil) 


Lea Thompson, Ed Gale, Chip Zien, Tim Robbins, Jeffery Jones, Paul Guilfoyle 

What’s it about? 

On a world where ducks have evolved to be the dominant species, the world-weary and sardonic Howard (Zien) is accidentally transported to Earth. 


There he meets struggling rock singer Beverly (Thompson), her annoying ex, Philsy (Robbins) and Doctor Jenning (Jones), the scientist responsible for his arrival. 


Howard then embarks on a series of misadventures, culminating with the gang having to stop an alien invasion of Dark Overlords. 


Howard the Duck is most famous for all the wrong reasons; namely, being an utter failure, and George Lucas’ greatest folly. 

And the film is indeed a mess; tonally all over the place and consistently unsure which age group it’s trying to appeal to. 


However, there is charm among the drivel. Howard is likeable, funny and wry. Beverly is enthusiastic, charming and sweet. Philsy is… well, two out of three aint bad. 


The film contains some nice lines, amusing set-pieces with impressive practical stunt work, and in its second half, a genuinely interesting and scary villain. 


And like Howard himself, what the film lacks in subtly and class, it almost makes up for in wit, slick escapades and an honest attempt at something quirky, exciting and droll. 


It may be a misfire. It may be a missed opportunity. And it may ultimately suck, just a little bit. 


But it also contains a protagonist who is a beer-drinking, cigar-smoking, sarcastic, horny, heroic amphibian bird who knows Quack-Fu. 


And ultimately, what more do you want from a movie? 



Howard- “We've got a saying on my planet. If God intended us to fly, he wouldn't have taken away our wings.” 


Dark Overlord- “An evil unlike any you can imagine is about to engulf the Earth. 

Waitress- “Oh, no, no, we got fights in here all the time.” 



Philsy- “Fly, Howard! Find your instincts, trust your birdness, FLY!” 



Beverly- “He's my favourite duck.” 

Dr. Jenning- “You hardly know him.” 


The pitch: "Come up with a sequel to the 1986 cult classic."

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