Postal (2007)

Uwe Boll's PostalReviewed by Nomad

Starring Zack Ward, Dave Foley, Chris Coppola, Michael Benyaer, Jackie Tohn, Erick Avari

Written and Directed by Uwe Boll

We live in a world where Hollywood deems formula and repetition as essential keys for a successful box office. What’s worked before will surely work again! Ideas are bought, repackaged and slapped onto a poster with the go-to guys attached in the hopes you’ll remember the fantastic time you had watching The Hot Chick or The 40-Year Old Virgin or Talladega Nights. Hell, they’ll even sell this to you as an idea: “From the producers of” blah blah blah. So, you want me to go see a movie because some rich guy who put money into a hit also put money into a new one? With the average person’s movie dollars disappearing faster than corn chips in front of Joey Fatone, it seems the public isn’t willing to plunk down their cash on the chance that they “might” like what they are about to see. Now, a hero comes to save us from the mundane, neutered comedy we have been spoon fed as of late. That visionary’s name is … Uwe Boll. Oh yeah, you heard me. The man who some would argue inadvertently struck comedy gold with the now legendary House of the Dead turns out to be an evil comedy genius.

Postal, linked to the popular video game of the same name purely by title, is the tale of an everyman. To be more precise, it’s about an everyman who is trapped in a loveless relationship with a whale of a woman who appears to be plucked from the frames of the Adult Swim cartoon “Squidbillies”, can’t find work, is tortured daily by governmental bureaucracy, and is just about at his limit. So, does our hero take a cue from Falling Down and start blowing up the city? Nope. Postal has higher aspirations than that. The “Postal Dude” (Ward), his only name in the film, joins forces with his morally corrupt, cult leader Uncle Dave (Foley) to pull off a scheme that could only be taken seriously in 2007 … and maybe even work in real life. This is the tale of people with more balls than brains getting over on people too lazy to even notice what is happening all around them. It’s a complete spoof on the state of affairs in America as we hunt down international terrorists who most likely have taken up middle class living in Northridge, CA; and yet, the normal trappings and lame jokes you’d see in spoof fare like Epic Movie are thrown out the window in favor of well written and executed sight gags, hysterical dialogue, and moments so funny your jaw will drop in disbelief. Why will you be so shocked? Well, hell, it’s a Uwe Boll movie! The man despised by keyboard tappers the world over delivers what is probably the funniest movie I’ve seen in five years. Amazing.

Dave Foley in Postal (click to see it bigger)Zack Ward, whom you’ll remember as the evil little red-haired kid out to kick Ralphie’s ass in A Christmas Story, takes on the role of Postal Dude, an average guy who tries to do the right thing and is continually smacked upside the head with the proverbial wet fish for his troubles. You know things are bad when even your fellow trailer park neighbors are ready to kick you when you’re down. Ward plays this role with just about every ounce of compassion and gusto he can muster, presenting a sympathetic guy who is forced to do a whole lot of bad things in the name of personal freedom and future happiness. The result is colossally funny as Dude becomes a character who can lift up a box of Wheaties and have you in stitches. Dave Foley is given the chance to be the man we were only given glimpses of in his drunken poker commentary of past years. Leading a hippie commune, Uncle Dave lives his days in a drug-fueled haze, ever flanked by followers fresh from Maxim magazine photo shoots. Do I even need to say Foley is fantastic in this film? Fans of Foley’s mix of manic charm and unpredictable hilarity will not be disappointed in the least. Also, just a warning. You’ll see more of Foley in Postal than you ever thought you wanted to … and I’m not talking about screen time.

Chris Spencer and Ralf Moeller play stereotypical police officers: on the take, cramming down doughnuts, and shooting wildly into crowded city streets. This unlikely comic duo provides a break from the primary storyline and will bust you up at every turn. Another divergence comes from our friends the Taliban, led by Larry (No Soup For You!) Thomas as Osama Bin Ladin, who rails with his thick Middle Eastern accent into a camera one moment and drops into a non-specific American drone the next. Osama is comfortable here in America and has Bush on speed dial. Fucking amazing. As if there weren’t enough to laugh at already. These three primary forces are destined to collide as the story climaxes, and as it should be, the ride getting there is like being on the Tilt-A-Whirl with the off switch shooting sparks. One last shining star in this film is Verne Troyer, who plays himself cursing, spitting, and being abused by just about every character in the film. His finale is probably the most unexpected moment I’ve ever seen in a movie. Trust me when I say you’ll be talking about this one for years!

A scene from Postal (click to see it bigger)So now you’re asking yourself, “Why do I want to read about a comedy on a horror news site?” Not to worry, li’l camper. Postal puts guns in the hands of every third person in the film, which means the two people to the left and right are about to die horribly. You’ll see Taliban suicide bombers splattered across storefronts, kids’ chests exploding open in hails of gunfire, babies in oncoming traffic, and the formerly unspoken terror of … monkeys in drag. Now let’s just hope that the MPAA doesn’t cut this film’s balls off.

While most blockbuster comedies bog you down with one or two big names, dominating screen time and generally reducing the rest of the cast to walking trees to bounce jokes off of, Postal presents an ensemble cast that make sense as parts of an insane, twisted little planet and later come together for moments that are never forced or contrived. There were times in this film when I couldn’t believe how creative the comedic writing was so I just remained there jaw agape, eyes glued to the screen, and laughing my ass off every five minutes. Would it shock you to know that not only did Uwe Boll direct this film, but he wrote it as well??!! Uwe Boll, comic genius. Get used to it. Postal is the bloody, unflinching, uproarious film most Troma movies wish they could be. Well acted, well written, and 100% fun. Ladies and gentlemen, start your blogs. Uwe Boll made the funniest movie I’ve seen all year. Believe it.

5 out of 5

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