Steve Gerber Piggyback
For the 80's it has that vibe that many of the fantastical movies of that period had, for instance, Back To The Future (though done better), The Goonies (better than average), Beetlejuice, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, Weird Science, Earth Girls Are Easy, Spaceballs, and so forth. Like I said, it's not a great movie, but has that zany element to it that a lot of the films of that decade had. I'm not sure why that decade had so many films like that other than I think perhaps they were influenced by punk and new wave music, and some of that manic music overlapped into the films, and also Hollywood wanted to exploit and capitalize on that market. Sure there were other and better films made during that decade like Blade Runner, The Empire Strikes Back, Die Hard, Aliens, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, or which ever films were your personal favorites. Actually looking back at that decade reveals just how many amazing films were made during that timeframe. So back to Howard the Duck, it wasn't the greatest, but for me it wasn't a totally stinker either. I prefer it over Spaceballs, Earth Girls Are Easy, and a few other films of that caliber.
I never knew much about Howard the Duck or Steve Gerber either as I never read an issue of said comic. I always heard it mentioned when someone was talking about great or unusual comics. That it contained a lot of satire, was well written, and was pretty funny. Man-Thing I was a bit more familiar with as I had one or two issues of that, though my knowledge of that was slim too, though I liked a lot of the horror comics. At any rate, here's the piggyback link to The Gerber Curse site. I found it interesting because it has a biography on Gerber and notes many of this works. Enjoy.