Weird: The Al Yankovic Story (2022)

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8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Fun...good for fans

Ends a little too soon, people still like Weird Al and his humor or could dislike Weird Al and his humor

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Weird:  The Al Yankovic Story

Studio:  Funny or Die/Tango Entertainment (III)/The Roku Channel

Genre(s):  Comedy

Release Date(s):  September 8, 2022 (Toronto International Film Festival)/November 4, 2022 (US)

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

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She’s the Devil in diguise

Alfred Matthew Yankovic (Daniel Radcliffe) wasn’t like other children…he knew what he wanted in life.  He wanted to take the lyrics to famous songs and change the words.  Everything Al believes in is against the morals of his father (Toby Huss).  When Al sets out on his own and with help from his friends and Dr. Demento (Rainn Wilson), Al isn’t only going to chase his dream…he’s going to rock the world!!!

Directed by Eric Appel (who penned the script with “Weird Al” Yankovic), Weird:  The Al Yankovic Story is a musical biopic parody film.  The film developed from a Funny or Die sketch and was released on Roku.

I love Weird Al Yankovic…I remember his music as a kid (when the movie is set), and I’ve seen him in concert…I can verify that this biopic is 100% accurate…or not.

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Don’t f$!# with Al!!!

The movie is pretty smart.  There is a little bit of Walk Hard:  The Dewey Cox Story in it, but the film oddly have a bit of a different flavor.  It of course makes sense for a parody performer to parody the tired biopic genre.  The film creates a web of clichés that a few time feel like sketch comedy but largely crafts the weirdness of the world.  The ending feels rather abrupt (but appropriate for the movie).  I think the movie could have been longer or an actual streaming mini-series.

Daniel Radcliffe is genius casting since he does fit for casting for a biopic but also he seems to have the fun that is needed in the role.  Evan Rachel Wood also gives a good Madonna impression while Rainn Wilson feels appropriate for Dr. Demento.  The movie is loaded with celebrities and celebrities impersonating other celebrities including Lin-Manuel Miranda, Michael McKean, Will Forte, Conan O’Brien (Andy Warhol), Jack Black (Wolfman Jack), Demetri Martin (Tiny Tim), Arturo Casto (Pablo Escobar), Paul F. Tompkins (Gallagher), Emo Phillips (Salvador Dali), Quinta Brunson (Oprah Winfrey), James Preston Rogers (Hulk Hogan), Nina West (Divine), and Weird Al Yankovic himself playing Tony Scotti.

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Live your dreams

The movie also manages to parody a lot of what makes a biopic a biopic not in only storytelling but visuals.  The different genres, and different mediums (like TV interviews and appearances) that are all used in the cliché biopic story.  While Walk Hard did this as well, the surreal of this film wasn’t as visually surreal but more intentionally grounded so the humorous because the visuals.

As un-controversial as Weird Al is, he is also really controversial.  People like his parodies or people often hate his parodies.  Al fans are loyal and get his humor.  You also can completely place Weird Al in a strange group of celebrities with unusual staying quality despite seeming to be flash-in-the-pan type celebrity traits (the characters at the pool party are a great example).  Weird was fun, and Weird was Al…and felt like it was just what you’d want and need from a Weird Al movie.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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