Starring Zack Ward and Dave Foley. Rated 18A.
In the locally shot Postal—an ultraviolent satire that blasts away at everything from 9-11 to new-age religion—director-cowriter Uwe Boll offers a scatter-gun approach to making us laugh. The results are often brazenly offensive, as if he’s decided to emulate the cruder aspects of South Park with live actors while forgetting to include the mollifying feature of those cute little round heads. Granted, we’ve got Verne Troyer (Mini Me in the Austin Powers series) getting stuffed into his own suitcase and punching guys in the crotch. There’s even a blood-spattered cameo by Juno’s venerable J. K. Simmons.
But despite a few interesting flourishes—the movie opens with two terrorists earnestly debating how many virgins they’ll get to defile in the afterlife—keep your satirical expectations low. Boll’s eye for the seedier aspects of the American nightmare falls somewhere between early John Waters and Russ Meyer without the sex. Although the best parts of Postal seem driven by a committed cast and a fearless sense of juvenile experimentation, there’s little here that’s consistently funny or original.
Our leading man (Zack Ward, who played Scut Farkus in A Christmas Story) starts out as a well-meaning piece of trailer trash. His anger begins to get the better of him shortly after he decides to hook up with his shady Uncle Dave (Dave Foley of Kids in the Hall). Uncle Dave proposes a moneymaking scheme to steal a shipment of popular dolls. From there, the plot gets bogged down in wisecracking terrorists, small-town vigilantes, and plenty of flying bullets.
Based on the video game of the same name, Postal revels in mowing down innocent kids in a hail of gunfire. But the most controversial aspect here may be the gimmick that George W. Bush (Brent Mendenhall) and Osama bin Laden (Larry Thomas) are actually close buddies with their own secret personal agendas. Okay, so it’s not Michael Moore. But if the sense of adolescent stupidity far outweighs any political insight, Boll has at least provided some unvarnished blog fodder for the kind of kid who likes to point out that adults are destroying the world.