I first heard of Weird Al Yankovic’s song decades ago through the ‘Off the Deep End’ album with his hit, ‘Smells Like Nirvana.’ ‘Weird: The Al Yankovic Story’ is a biographical parody of the eccentric musician Weird Al Yankovic. The film is directed by debutant filmmaker Eric Appel and stars Daniel Radcliffe, Evan Rachel Wood, Rainn Wilson, and Toby Huss. The film was released by the Roku Channel platform with a budget of USD 8 million. You’re mistaken if you think this is a typical biographical drama film.

Since childhood, Al (Radcliffe) has been a strange boy who likes to parody popular songs. While the father did not like his son’s attitude, his mother bought him an accordion that shaped his later life. One of his singles, ‘My Bologna,’ became a radio hit, while record producers mocked him. His meeting with his little idol, Dr. Demento (Wilson), a top broadcaster, changes the course of his career. All top musicians expect their songs to be parodied by Al, even pop stars of Madonna’s caliber (Wood).

I wonder if a parody of this kind has ever been produced. It’s not ‘This Is Spinal Tap’ (1984), a fictional band (mockumentary), but it is the parodied life story of the artist himself. The filmmakers made this film with the spirit of the artist himself, parodying top songs in his trademark style. This is a brilliant comedy where all the characters in the film play seriously while the audience cannot contain their laughter. Madonna, Michael Jackson, to Pablo Escobar did not escape being victims, especially the pop queen.

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In addition to Radcliffe, who plays ‘crazy’ as Al, Evan Rachel Wood may be the main attention-stealer who plays adorably as Madonna. Both may be candidates for the best player in the Academy Awards if they were in different universes. For their roles, they both played brilliantly. Dozens of ‘cameos’ appear in the film, played by big names such as Jack Black, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Conan O’Brien, to Yankovic himself.

‘Weird: The Al Yankovic Story’ is a brilliant attempt to parody the legend’s life story with the artist’s unique stamp and two stellar castings that played well. With all its gimmicks, this film is a new achievement of the biographical genre. Weird Al Yankovic isn’t the sort of legend that Queen or Elvis has a biopic for, but for innovation, this film is something completely different through its comedic approach.


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Artikel SebelumnyaConfidential Assignment 2: International
Artikel BerikutnyaKritik Film, Oh, Kritik Film : Sebuah Kritik untuk Kritik
His hobby has been watching films since childhood, and he studied film theory and history autodidactically after graduating from architectural studies. He started writing articles and reviewing films in 2006. Due to his experience, the author was drawn to become a teaching staff at the private Television and Film Academy in Yogyakarta, where he taught Film History, Introduction to Film Art, and Film Theory from 2003 to 2019. His debut film book, "Understanding Film," was published in 2008, which divides film art into narrative and cinematic elements. The second edition of the book, "Understanding Film," was published in 2018. This book has become a favorite reference for film and communication academics throughout Indonesia. He was also involved in writing the Montase Film Bulletin Compilation Book Vol. 1-3 and "30 Best Selling Indonesian Films 2012-2018." Additionally, he authored the "Horror Film Book: From Caligari to Hereditary" (2023) and "Indonesian Horror Film: Rising from the Grave" (2023). Until now, he continues to write reviews of the latest films at montasefilm.com and is actively involved in all film productions at the Montase Film Community. His short films have received high appreciation at many festivals, both local and international. Recently, his writing was included in the shortlist (top 15) of Best Film Criticism at the 2022 Indonesian Film Festival. From 2022 until now, he has also been a practitioner-lecturer for the Film Criticism and Film Theory courses at the Yogyakarta Indonesian Institute of the Arts in the Independent Practitioner Program.


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