If you were expecting a completely accurate biopic about Al Yankovic’s life, this is not it.
Weird: The Al Yankovic Story is a satire about the musician’s life. From when he was young and received his own accordion from a travelling salesman, to when he records his first hit and signs with a label, then ultimately continues on into superstardom, everything you never needed to know about Weird Al is right here (or not).
In all honesty, I probably would not have watched this movie if it wasn’t for Daniel Radcliffe. I’ve been a fan of his for as long as I can remember (and at one point I even had a solid case as to why the two of us should be together) and think he is such a breath of fresh air. Having completely broken the mould left behind from his Potter days, Radcliffe tends to choose roles that are usually off the beaten path. Although Yankovic himself approached him to star, Radcliffe did an amazing job. The fact that he learned how to play the accordion and had all the mannerisms down pat was just a plus. I almost wish he’d been the one singing too.
As for the story itself, it is completely and one hundred per cent batshit crazy. I mean that in the best way possible. Do not take anything to heart because it is all exaggerated on purpose. The fact that this is how Yankovic wanted it to be made it all worth while. At times I do wish we’d had more of an idea as to what was more real and what was fabricated, but after a while I wasn’t as bothered anymore. At least his most memorable songs made it into the film! While I may not be completely familiar with his work, I do know some of his hits such as Like A Surgeon and I Love Rocky Road.
Another reason why this film is so fun is because of its colorful cast of characters. Evan Rachel Wood is the perfect choice for Madonna. From her looks to her little quirks, I just wish they’d given her the chance to sing too. To have Rainn Wilson as Dr. Demento, a mentor of sorts for our lead and Quinta Brunson as Oprah Winfrey was just the cherry on top of one of the most crazy array of cameos I have ever seen.
Overall, Weird: The Al Yankovic Story was exactly what you’d expect it to be: weird. I may not have learned anything new about Al, but I don’t think that was the point. At the end of the day, it all came down to being true to who you are and I think that was perfectly illustrated.