by Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Postal is the latest from the notorious Dr. Uwe Boll, who is by reputation the film industry's greatest financial wizard and worst director. He has an uncanny ability to raise vast sums of money for his films by exploiting tax loopholes, investment shelters, and the incentives posted by national film boards. Unfortunately, most people feel that Dr. Boll, like Dr. Frankenstein, uses his genius for evil instead of good. He uses that money to make films adapted from video games. Those movies have been consistently and predictably despised by those who hate the very idea of films being made from video games, but they are also reviled by the fans of the games. That makes Boll-bashing one of the few things that critics and fanboys can always agree upon. Dr. Boll has never scored a perfect zero at Rotten Tomatoes, a site which evaluates how many critics like a given movie, but his adaptation of Alone in the Dark came heartbreakingly close with a positive review score of 1%, and no Boll movie has ever received more than 11% positive reviews from the critics. On the fanboy side, three of Boll's films are rated in the all-time bottom 100 at IMDb, which is the ultimate fanboy barometer. (Three other Uwe Boll films are very close to that IMDb list!)

His previous video game adaptations have either been horror/splatter films or sword and sorcery epics, and have taken themselves reasonably seriously. Postal is (loosely) based on a game, but is a whole 'nother kettle of crawdads. It is a raunchy, offensive, lowbrow comedy which deliberately flouts as many taboos as possible. It begins, for example, with a comic scene in which the 9/11 hijackers are debating whether there are enough virgins in paradise to make martyrdom worthwhile. Just as they decide to abandon the whole jihad thing and fly to the Bahamas, the American passengers use brute force to storm through the cockpit door to take back the plane. Unfortunately, the passengers do not believe the hijackers about the new flight plan, and the ensuing struggle for the controls causes the plane to veer into the World Trade Center.

That gives you the idea. The film is as tasteless and politically incorrect as possible, and deliberately so, even when there are no laughs to mine. The transgressive subject matter is designed to promote itself with controversy. Boll, who co-wrote the script, ridicules Americans, Germans, religion, Moslems, the handicapped, dwarfs, big business, and even himself (he has a small role, playing himself). The entire film is an in-your-face act of provocation. When it is not insulting people, it is indulging in crass displays of bodily functions like bowel movements and sex acts involving morbidly obese people. All of it is presented with as much nudity, violence and foul language as is possible in the film's context.


Yes, it does have a plot, of sorts. A down-and-out trailer park denizen and his uncle, the leader of a bogus religious cult, conspire to end their financial woes by hijacking a shipment of the hottest toys on the American market: the Crotchy Dolls. (Don't ask.) Unfortunately, the Taliban have hatched a parallel scheme to use the same dolls to distribute an incurable disease throughout America. The two groups compete for the booty, while various crazy Americans attempt to prevent both groups from achieving their goals.

The film isn't as bad as you might expect from Dr. Boll. Of the films Boll has made since 2003, Postal rates the highest at Rotten Tomatoes. 9% of the reviews were positive - more than double Boll's previous high rating in that period, which was 4%. Not only is it an upgrade for him, but I think that the 9% score is actually a hair low and probably includes some built-in anti-Boll prejudice. I'd say that Postal is a better movie than the directly comparable Love Guru, for example, which drew about 14% positive reviews.  Boll has a sense of humor, and the film does deliver some laughs, especially when it features the guy who plays bin Laden (Seinfeld's "soup Nazi"). Boll is a smart man and some of the ideas are damned clever, like a scene with bin Laden attending a presentation by one of those motivational speakers, taking diligent notes, and trying to buy the books until his credit card is rejected - all of which reminded me of the humor in the early Woody Allen comedies like Bananas.

Where Postal stops short of being a really good film is in the execution and timing. Many scenes go on long after the joke has been exhausted, and every single scene is lacking in subtlety. Sometimes that sledgehammer approach to comedy can be brutally and blackly effective, as in the pre-credits 9/11 scene described above, but most of the time it's just kind of offensive without really being funny. I don't really need to spend much time watching a stark naked Dave Foley take a public dump while he discusses his finances with his top advisor, who grimaces at the sights and smells of Dave's unsavory excretion ritual. If the joke had been a throwaway, it could have been funny, but prolonging it morphed it from disgustingly funny to just plain disgusting, and the hammy advisor was allowed to play directly to the camera with enough exaggerated facial expressions to embarrass Zero Mostel.


* behind the scenes footage with no sound or commentary

* Uwe Boll boxing against his critics

* second disc with the Postal 2 game.





9 Rotten Tomatoes  (% positive)
22 (of 100)





3.6 IMDB summary (of 10)
C- Yahoo Movies





Box Office Mojo. No North American release. It grossed about $150,000 in Germany in late 2007. The reported budget was $15 million.




  • Holly Eglington: breasts

  • Julia Sandberg: buns

  • Lucie Guest: bethonged buns.



Our Grade:

If you are not familiar with our grading system, you need to read the explanation, because the grading is not linear. For example, by our definition, a C is solid and a C+ is a VERY good movie. There are very few Bs and As. Based on our descriptive system, this film is a:


Watchable if inconsistent shock humor and absurdity - which actually works from time to time. Variety summed it up perfectly when it declared: "This anything-goes exercise isn't dull -- one just wishes the outrageousness were more consistently funny."