Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny is a touching, coming-of-age epic about how a Hobbit-shape dreamer leaves home to follow his dreams, which involve rocking hard and, eventually, getting stoned out of his gourd on really good pot.
Along the way he meets his spiritual guru/sensei, who instructs the naive youth in the ways of rocking and smoking. Together they go on a Noble Quest after a Sacred Object (a guitar pick forged from the tooth of Satan centuries before). On their journey, they meet enigmatic wise men (a couple of barely recognizable stars who look as though they're having more fun than is legal) and beautiful maidens, too, in a sorority house.
In a fiery climax, they face off against Beelzebub himself, armed only with their pluck and their belief in the transformative powers of rocking - rocking hard. That involves singing in high voices that haven't been fashionable since the days when men in spandex lined up next to each other and swung their long locks in unison onstage.
(Careful viewers might notice that the Horned One looks an awful lot like prankster Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters.)
Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny is a fictionalized comedy about the origins of the acoustic heavy-metal duo, jokesters Jack Black and Kyle Gass, and it does not take itself seriously for even a millisecond. A loose collection of over-the-top anecdotes, it looks as though it cost about $29.99 to make, covering some familiar ground for fans of their CDs and HBO shorts.
It's a genial inside joke for those who are already fans of the portly duo, and those who aren't might wonder why some effort wasn't put into making an actual "good" movie that others might also enjoy.
I sort of admired its low-rent earnest wackiness, and I must note that, to its credit, it is unfailingly good-humored.
'TENACIOUS D IN THE PICK OF DESTINY'
THE VERDICT: **
WHO'S IT FOR?: Fans of the D only
CREDITS: Directed by Liam Lynch; starring Jack Black, Kyle Gass and Jason Reed
RUNNING TIME: 1 hour, 33 minutes
FAMILY GUIDE: R for profanity, sex talk, drug use and operatic rock songs sung in falsetto
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