While subtitled The Al Yankovic Story, WEIRD, is absolutely a parody film at every level. But what else would you expect from the Parody King himself?
Starring Daniel Radcliffe as the titular Weird Al, and absolutely committing to the role, this not-exactly-a-biopic is full of brilliantly placed nostalgia and unrelenting comedy weaving a tale as weird as the man it is about. Clearly a love letter to his fans, Yankovic co-wrote the film with Director Eric Appel, and stuffed it full of fascinating, yet often completely made up stories. Certifying itself as a silly movie from the first scene, Weird lulls the audience into a false sense of acceptance and believability, presenting potential truths slathered in ridiculous comedy and dialogue. Slowly, as his story continues, Al’s presented history becomes less and less realistic, confusing the audience into an understandable disorientation.
Evan Rachel Wood fuses into her role of Madonna, perfecting the icons voice and movements, with undeniable assistance from makeup as well. In addition to Wood and Quinta Brunson’s Oprah, Weird is overwhelmingly crowded with recognizable comedy faces making so many cameos that multiple viewings are required to catch them all. Although the actual journey of Yankovic’s path to stardom is still unclear, Weird ultimately decided to focus on the tone and playfulness of the artist, with critics drawing comparisons to beloved comedies Zoolander and Walk Hard, while being heavily influenced (and poking fun at) rockstar biopics like Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody.
Leaning into the absurdity, Weird is a delightful hour and 58 minutes, including the clever and fun end credits. Weird: The Al Yankovic Story will air Exclusively on The Roku Channel, starting November 4th.
— Yael Tygiel