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Return Uwe Boll’s ‘Postal’ to sender

With “Postal,” he actually shows some ambition. It’s based on a video game, too, but it’s intended as a ribald, politically incorrect satire.
/ Source: The Associated Press

How does Uwe Boll keep getting work?

Seriously, this is not a rhetorical question — someone, somewhere surely must know the answer.

The German director has built a career, if you can call it that, on taking video games such as “Alone in the Dark,” “House of the Dead” and “BloodRayne” and turning them into sloppy, unwatchable movies. (The press notes describe him as “controversial director Uwe Boll.” That’s probably giving him too much credit for accomplishing anything of the slightest significance.)

Those were pretty straightforward action pics. With “Postal,” he actually shows some ambition. It’s based on a video game, too, but it’s intended as a ribald, politically incorrect satire.

Boll says he’s aiming for the kind of comic tone found in the “Airplane!” and “Naked Gun” movies, but he and co-writer Bryan C. Knight have nowhere near the deft touch required to pull off that kind of absurd humor.

Here’s just one example: Osama bin Laden (Larry Thomas), who speaks with an American accent and goes by the name “Sammy,” calls President Bush on a pay phone and is greeted with a playful, “Osama, you old (expletive).” Later they share a “Brokeback Mountain” joke.

Ooh, so subversive — and fresh!

The main point of this pointless post-9/11 “comedy” revolves around two groups competing to steal a warehouse full of phallic “Krotchy” dolls with the hope of using them for various nefarious purposes.

One is led by the unemployed Dude (Zack Ward) and his Uncle Dave (Dave Foley), the head of a new agey love cult. Foley does a painful full-frontal nude shot, then sits down on the toilet to loudly relieve himself in front of his assistant while smoking a joint. Theoretically, this was meant to be “edgy,” but instead it’s just gross. Dave wants to sell the dolls on eBay to pay the $1 million in back taxes he owes.

Meanwhile, Osama & Co. have been hiding in the back room of a convenience store, playing pool all day and pretending to act tough when the cameras are rolling. They want the dolls because each one contains a vial of the avian flu, which is enough to wipe out the entire country.

All this action takes place in the fictional town of Paradise, which is essentially one big trailer park. This gives Boll the opportunity to make fun of morbidly obese women and toothless, scrawny men. Also in his cross hairs are Asian drivers, abusive cops, self-important TV reporters and people who take too long to order their coffee. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel, and there’s zero innovation or brains behind his observations.

Boll shows up as himself at a German-themed amusement park, dressed in lederhosen while hot women in bikinis wander around wearing swastikas and Hitler mustaches. Later he declares, “I have video games.” It’s an in-joke, of course.

Also making a cameo as himself is Verne Troyer, Mini-Me from the “Austin Powers” movies, who gets locked in his own suitcase with a bunch of sex toys and is later raped by 1,000 monkeys.

Mercifully, it ends in a hail of gunfire, with everyone shooting indiscriminately at everybody else, followed by a bomb explosion. They all go postal, you see. But we could have used that obliteration at the beginning and saved ourselves some time and agony.