“Weird: The Al Yankovic Story” – Movie Review by Rafy Mediavilla (@Rmediavilla). #TIFF22

“Weird: The Al Yankovic Story” – Movie Review by Rafy Mediavilla (@Rmediavilla). #TIFF22

Exploring every facet of ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic’s life, from his meteoric rise to fame with early hits like ‘Eat It’ and ‘Like a Surgeon’ to his torrid celebrity love affairs and famously depraved lifestyle, this biopic takes audiences on a truly unbelievable journey through Yankovic’s life and career, from gifted child prodigy to the greatest musical legend of all time.

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story was in a weird position, pun intended, when I first arrived at the Toronto International Film Festival 2022. To be completely honest the movie was on my radar, but I wasn’t completely sure if I was going to be able to make it or squeeze it into my schedule. My first concern with this movie was that it was a Roku channel original movie, and with Roku in my book not being such a major platform I felt it would get lost in the mix, everything was going on in the festival, and at the release date.

Yet when it was all said and done, I started my coverage of the Toronto International Film Festival 2022 with this movie, and I have zero regrets about not skipping it. Truly the main reason I wanted to see the movie was that I was really interested in seeing Daniel Radcliffe’s performance, meaning his transformation into Weird Al Yankovic. So let me just start by saying that he did disappoint, and more importantly the movie, didn’t disappoint. The energy in the theater was electric you could see that clearly, people were really excited about what we were about to see and honestly, it’s that type of energy you feel when you’re just walking into a blockbuster box office big draw movie.

Story-wise what writers Eric Appel and Weird Al himself wrote He said over the top roost of his career. He actually went all out at poking fun at every single point of his career. To the point that when you think about it, it makes sense that the thing that defined Weird Al career, should be the way he tells his side of the story. But what took me by surprise is that the story is much more than just a parody of his life and that his life is a perfect example of self-acceptance, forgiveness, and hope.

There’s no one thing in the way this movie was produced that didn’t work. Everything from beginning to end was well thought out. From the comedy skits to the music arrangements, the attention to detail to make sure everything makes sense and works is uncanny. This is another perfect example of the tough work that production designers, hair stylers, and wardrobe people must go through and how important is their work in order for the story to be told as expected.

Clearly, Daniel Radcliffe did his homework, he really went deep into understanding how Weird Al worked and who he was for this role. I’m pretty sure this is the most fun he has ever had in a movie set in all of his careers. Yet he had help, they’ll wait the script was written help the story was developed helped the music, the craziness behind it all, and their supportive cast also helped out a lot Evan Rachel Wood was amazing as Madonna, and Rainn Wilson’s performance also stood out.

In the end, I was completely blown away by what I saw on how this movie absolutely plays tribute to everything Weird Al stands for, yet it was full of heart and emotional moments mixed up with all the humor and laughter. A movie that once it ends, it invites you to be yourself and to give zero fucks about whether people like you or not. Regardless, of whether you are a fan of Weird Al or not is a must-see experience. Again, my only complaint a study would have a release on a wider platform.