The 100% (wink) Unadulterated Truth (wink, wink)
First, if you're not a fan of "Weird Al" Yankovic you're not going to get this film (nor will you if you don't have Roku!)
Second, if you are a Weird Al fan and are expecting an in-depth, tell-all bio-pic, stop. You should know already that anything about Weird Al presented by Weird Al is going to be ...well, weird.
The film begins with an adult Al Yankovic, portrayed by Daniel Radcliffe ("Harry Potter"), bloodied and unconscious, being wheeled into a hospital emergency room with a team of medical professionals desperately trying to save his life ...and failing. The team step back from the gurney, dejected and heartbroken at the life lost, and prepare to announce time of death when, suddenly, Yankovic sits bolt upright and screams for a piece of paper and a No. 2 pencil!
Tongue planted firmly in cheek, the "real" story of Weird Al then takes the viewer to the beginning, where young Alfred Yankovic, at the whims of his parents, is denied the pleasure of listening to his beloved "Dr. Demento" radio show, thwarted from his pastime of making up goofy lyrics to familiar songs, and encouraged to abandon his dreams and stop doing the things that make him happy.
The Master of Parody, Masterfully Self-parodied
While sprinkling nuggets of actual truth here and there — Yankovic receiving his first accordion through a purchase from a traveling salesman; recording his first hit, "My Bologna" (My Sharona), in a public restroom for the natural acoustical reverb; the song becoming a hit thanks to play on "The Doctor Demento Show" — the film revels in a veritable "Upside Down" of fabricated lunacy — Madonna (Evan Rachel Wood) wooing him and engaging in a romantic relationship solely to secure the honor of the parody of one of her songs and the "Yankovic bump," a resultant increase in sales for artists whose songs he has parodied; Yankovic wiping out a drug cartel in his single-handed effort to rescue her as she is kidnapped from said cartel; his spiral into alcohol and drugs. The pride, the self-indulgence, and the excess tell the all too familiar story of the rise and fall of an entertainment icon.
But, of course, that isn't "Weird Al's" story at all. In a career remarkably devoid of the typical exploits of a superstar's rocket ride to the top, Yankovic is perhaps one of the nicest guys in show business. Said to be extremely shy in his personal life, the very religious Yankovic is keenly averse to stepping on toes or bruising stars' egos, so — though he is legally not required to do so — he personally seeks permission to release a parody from the original artist her/himself. By following this practice, he has had relatively few refusals and no tabloid-blazing scandals.
And, perhaps, it is why — given the opportunity and the platform to tell his story — he chose, instead, to spoof himself. The bell curve of "extremely talented, nice guy makes an unlikely rise to the top and stays there," with no peaks and valleys, no debauchery, no crossroads, unfortunately tells a boring story, unless it's on EWTN. So Yankovic decided to make it all up in a "biography" so outrageously ridiculous, it could only be a comedy.
This film is a joyous, goofy ride, intentionally light on facts, abundantly Weird Al-wacky, which — if you're a fan — you will most likely find hilarious.
If you're not a fan ...never mind.
"Weird: The Al Yankovic Story" A Numb Butt Cheeks® rating* of 8.8.
*The Numb Butt-Cheeks® scale of zero to ten: a Numb Butt-Cheeks rating of zero indicates such a disregard for the film that one could get up to go to the bathroom at any point without worry of missing anything exciting or important; a Numb Butt-Cheeks rating of ten indicates there is no way one would get up and leave, save for a distinct tearing of bladder tissue.