I recently spouted off about critics making up for giving handjobs to bad, major studio films (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) by tearing into easy targets, like Brendan Fraser and apparently the easiest target of them all, Uwe Boll. I’ve seen a lot of Boll films and I’ll be honest right now – I enjoyed some. House of the Dead and Alone in the Dark are not atrociously bad films. They entertain. On the other hand, Bloodrayne was so agonizing to watch I wanted to kill myself. But in reviewing a film, it’s important to judge it on its own merits and not come into it with hatred swelled up inside. Stepping into Postal I wasn’t thinking about Bloodrayne with vengeance in my heart, I was just thinking about watching a movie.
Recently, our own Neil Miller said that Postal was better than Meet the Spartans. He could have expanded on that easily and said it was better than Date Movie, Scary Movies 2, 3, and 4, Epic Movie, and Austin Powers: Goldmember. No joke. There is a special feature on the DVD where an Indiana Jones clad Verne Troyer gives a warning to Harrison Ford and the Indy crew that Postal is better. Guess what? It is. I enjoyed this Boll flick way more than I did Crystal Skull. Granted, the last installment of Indy probably was hindered by my high expectations and love, but the story was blah, the special effects were bleh, and Shia LeBeouf was, well, he was in it.
In Postal, Zack Ward stars as “Postal Dude,” a normal guy who, over the course of a day, gets caught up in a bad situation, mistaken for a murderer, then ends up embracing his new role as badass and goes a bit crazy in the process. In a comedy of errors, Postal Dude winds up trying to stop the end of the world by securing a truck full of Avian Bird Flu that two differing groups want to exploit. One group are Arab terrorists, lead by a disheartened Osama Bin Laden and the other are religious zealots. Uh… Environmental religious zealots. Of a fake religion. Then there are also the Citizens United Neighborhood Watch who are out to kill Postal Dude, though they don’t know about the bird flu. What follows is a violent and possibly offensive trip through religious/cult camps, a Little Germany theme park complete with Nazi jokes, and a trailer park full of hillbillies and the promiscuous soon to be ex-wife of Postal Dude.
Technically, the film looks good and was shot on 35mm film. The visuals are good and Boll has left behind some of the more frenetic and sped-up camera movements in favor of more stable and traditional shot selection. Acting-wise, everyone does an all right job, though I thought the George Bush imitator was pretty lame considering how many good imitators there are out in the world. Zack Ward is awesomely hilarious – how is this guy not working more? I love his stuff. He’s funny here and looks pretty ripped while wielding a machine gun. There are a lot of funny people who pop in this movie including Ralf Moeller (Beerfest), Dave Foley, and J.K. Simmons. Verne Troyer also turns in his best performance since pissing in the corner of the exercise room while sitting on a scooter in The Surreal Life. Boll cameos, as does the creator of the Postal video game in a hilarious turn of events.
In terms of babes, we get a bunch of them in various states of undress as well as some glimpsed boobs and some plump ass. For you chubby chasers, tune in, there’s plenty of “not so thin people” sex and if you’re feeling like you need a glimpse of Foley’s penis while he takes a shit, you’re in luck. I was happy to witness all of the violence in the film which includes lots of shootings, some beatings, nuclear attacks, and a couple of people being run over. I was elated to witness the shooting of children. Now, before you crucify me or I get bombarded with hate mail over people who have had their children shot, let me say this – it’s a fucking movie. Kids in movies always get a free pass, which is bullshit. In Postal, the over the top action sequences spare no one, not even Boll himself or the little children.
I honestly feel that this spoof movie is better than any of the more recent spoofs, except for Tropic Thunder. Is this intelligent commentary? Not always. But does it point a finger (the middle one) at the right people and make a statement? Yes, it does. Boll sets his sights upon soulless corporations, uncaring government, the cult of the environment, hypocrisy of global leaders, and the depths people will go to in fleecing you out of your money. Hell, he even hits on celebrity, his own infamy, annoying assholes in the Starbucks line, and pesky, jerk-off homeless. I know the homeless don’t have internet, but before someone bitches about this – I live in LA. The homeless are aggressive and annoying and make more in a week than FSR pays me in a month. Seriously, the homeless here are pulling down like $200 a day. Yet, if you don’t give them anything, because you legitimately have no money on you, they’ll call you an asshole or say something like “I don’t believe no white boy livin’ here ain’t got no money.” And that’s a quote.
I purchased this movie, and I’m glad I did. I’ll watch it again and laugh some more. The DVD extras include some behind the scenes footage, which has a little 6 year old girl being rigged with a squib for her death scene. The boxing matches that Boll famously competed in against some of his critics are also included on the disc. I was happy to see the German knock the shit out of everyone who stepped into the ring. Only one person even managed to lay an effeminate finger on him before it was lights out. But they probably deserved it for unfairly coming down harshly on Boll to give their sites and other reviews some legitimacy. On IMDB, there was a thread of people wanting to vote down Uwe’s movies that haven’t even started filming yet. Why such hate? I’m sure if you showed people Postal or the trailer from Tunnel Rats or Seed without letting them know it was from Boll, their reactions would skew far more positive than they do knowing it is from Boll. And that’s bullshit.
In summation, I say see Postal with an open mind. It was funny. There are a handful of positive reviews out there, though most try to play it safe by saying the movie is “half decent” or “the lesser of two evils.” I’ll go one step forward – Postal is good. I liked it. I enjoyed it. I will watch it again. It’s funny and irreverent and over the top. It’s also stupid at times (in a fun way) but revels in that fact. If you hate Uwe Boll, will this change your mind? Probably not. You’re biased and probably don’t even remember why you hate him. If you’re easily offended, you won’t like this either. But if you can laugh at anything and love a good spoof and some violence along with some stupid laughs, there is a lot here for you.
I recommend everyone watch this film and then let me know what you think. Don’t be the kind of idiot who judges something without watching it. Remember how we criticized all those protesters who spoke out against Tropic Thunder without seeing it? Time to cowboy up. Don’t talk shit about Postal until you’ve seen it.