Uwe Boll goes Postal

The controversial director talks about his return to comedy and the absurdity of war in the first part of our exclusive interview.

by Andrew Robertson

Uwe Boll on the set of Postal

Uwe Boll on the set of Postal

Uwe Boll is a joy to talk to. He's got an infectious laugh and clearly loves film. Catching up with him as Postal is released on DVD, he explained why he opted to

"After my first movie, German Fried Movie, [Postal is] a real comedy again. I went back with Postal to two things, to the comedy genre but also to writing."

Much of Boll's earlier work is self-penned, but "during House Of The Dead and the other genre movies [I] didn't write the script any more." He was clearly pleased to "go back to that in a way, the full control as a film-maker to write the script, to make a video-game-based movie [there's the chance to be] completely ridiculous."

He's worked in a variety of genres, above and beyond the (internet infamous) "video-game-based movies". And he says he is fond of working in different genres

"This is the point, this is the reason I went back to that. I think to make a comedy... to make more movies like Postal, [while] I'd love to do it is very very hard. To make my next movies, shooting right now, it's harder and more depressing stuff, but I hope that we're getting at one point, another idea for a really good comedy. On the other hand it is kind of very tough, to top Postal."

Asked about the darker humour of Postal, Uwe continues: "I really want to keep it up, I'm not interested in doing a romantic comedy, I would prefer to do something more like with Postal, in the spirit of Monty Python". The Python's work is clearly a touchstone for Postal, and that darker surrealism is clearly visible. The Python sketch with Cleese as a high-rise architect whose previous work was largely slaughterhouses sprang to mind almost immediately, and Uwe agreed that he was after a similar tone.

The absurdity of war and conflict informs Postal, with its (somewhat rubbish) Taliban attacking the Midwest. Boll is passionate about the absurdities of war, and repeats the antiwar sentiment hidden in Postal with some strong words. Talking about the fact that the conflict comes to his protagonist, and his forthcoming Vietnam film 1968 Tunnel Rats he touches on the notion that soldiers are volunteers now:

"It's an individual decision, less and less people are willing to die for the religion, the country, the peace, it's all bullshit, [there's no reason for] everyone [to] do a war, no matter their location. For the single Taliban, but also for the single GI, there is no war happening any more. [In Postal] there is something different from the whole power play of people like Bush, who are basically paid by the weapon and oil industry, to do a war. [They] use people to do it. This all breaks apart if the people have a little more courage, and a little more intelligence to just say no to it."

It's somewhat surprising to hear such strong words from a film-maker best known for adaptations that are, to put it mildly, not always well received by critics.

"[That's a] good point - people who know [me] personally, know of my dirty black humour, a few people know me for House Of The Dead, Alone In The Dark. In Postal I make some intelligent jokes about the political landscape, and they are very surprised. To know me, look into the earlier movies [like] Heart Of America, my german movies, and you'll not be so surprised"

"[I have made] tonnes of different genres, very different movies, [a] wide range, [and I have] learnt from a lot of mistakes, in the newer movies [I'm doing more]."

As video-game movies have formed such a large part of his ouevre, it seemed appopriate to ask what games he's playing at the moment:

"I like Grand Theft Auto and I loved Hitman and Silent Hill but other people got the movie rights and I'm pissed off and don't play them any more"; His laugh at this point is infectious; "but I love that game."

And when it comes to film, if you like Postal, then he's happy to recommend a few others to try.

"I hope, if people never saw it or owned it they should definitely own Life Of Brian, I like also Wag The Dog, also a satire; Postal in its way is more dirty, but I think it was a great movie."

When asked about a sequel to Postal, Uwe's pragmatic side shows through.

"I would have fun to do even a prequel, to show how he married 'bitch', and how she gets heavier every single day by five kilograms, it would be in a way, a sequel but in an apocalyptic world, the question is 'is it be funny', but I would never say no, but it must also make sense in terms of the DVD sales. A lot of territories are just not out there, [we] would have to get the numbers - is the European and North American return enough to make two movies?

"With a movie like Postal, also horror movie like Seed, I'm slowly changing reception of me." With that in mind, we went on to talk about his upcoming films (amongst other things), which you can read about here.

PostalPostal is out to own on DVD now, buy it from Amazon.

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