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16 user 1 critic

Viva Max (1969)

G | | Comedy | December 1969 (USA)
In the 1960s, a screwy Mexican General and his troops cross into Texas to re-capture the Alamo from the Gringos but they face opposition from the local police, the National Guard and the U.S. State Department.

Director:

Jerry Paris

Writers:

Jim Lehrer (novel) (as James Lehrer), Elliott Baker (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Ustinov ... General Maximilian Rodrigues De Santos
Pamela Tiffin ... Paula Whitland
Jonathan Winters ... General Billy Joe Hallson
John Astin ... Sergeant Valdez
Keenan Wynn ... General Lacomber
Harry Morgan ... Chief of Police Sylvester
Alice Ghostley ... Hattie
Kenneth Mars ... Dr. Sam Gillison
Ann Morgan Guilbert ... Edna Miller
Bill McCutcheon ... Desmond Miller
Gino Conforti ... Contreras
Christopher Ross Christopher Ross ... Gomez
Larry Hankin ... Romero
Paul Sand ... Moreno
Don Diamond ... Hernandez
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Storyline

When his girlfriend tells him that his men wouldn't follow him to a house of ill repute, Maximilian Rodrigues De Santos, a General in the Mexican Army, decides to perform some great act of heroism. He takes his men over the border into Texas and re-captures the Alamo. This upsets the Texans greatly. The Texas National Guard is sent to retake the mission. Normally, this would be easy, as Max's men have left all of their ammunition back in Mexico, but the State Department insists that no one be killed, and so the National Guard also goes in with unloaded weapons. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The most magnificent mistake of them all! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A musical adaptation of this movie, based on the original satirical novel by Jim Lehrer, had its first full read-through and sing-through, performed by Broadway and off-Broadway actors, actresses, and singers in New York City on November 21, 2013. See more »

Goofs

When Max tells Sergeant Valdez to raise the Mexican flag over the Alamo, the pole is clearly shown as being beyond the perimeter wall, however when the flag is raised, the pole is mounted on the side of a building- easily reached from inside. See more »

Quotes

Mexican Soldier: Halt, who goes there, please?
[to General Hallson on the other side of the door]
General Billy Joe Hallson: John Wayne!
Mexican Soldier: [opens door] Richard Widmark!
See more »

Crazy Credits

"All persons mentioned in this story are completely fictitious except for: Davy Crockett Col. William B. Travis James Bowie John Wayne and Richard Widmark" is the first credit to appear. See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Sexual Revolution (1971) See more »

User Reviews

Inconsequential fluff
2 October 2007 | by JoeytheBritSee all my reviews

Viva Max is a mildly diverting but inconsequential piece of fluff whose main idea – the retaking of the Alamo by the Mexicans 130 years after they famously failed to oust Davy Crockett and his mates – just doesn't have strong enough legs to carry it much beyond a 20-minute skit. Peter Ustinov – an undoubted talent, but not one that was probably not best-suited to film – just about avoids slipping into broad caricature. His character is inspired by wounded personal pride rather than national fervour, which effectively shuts off a possibly richer vein of humour, but Ustinov does at least manage to make him kind of believable within the context of the film. There is even an element of pathos toward the climax in the relationship between him and his loyal sergeant (John Astin – probably the best thing about this). Jonathan Winters, Harry Morgan and Keenan Wynn clearly don't have Ustinov's keen eye for emphasising the few interesting aspects in their broadly drawn characters and therefore resort to broad farce which weakens things considerably. This one's unlikely to appeal to any casual viewer born after 1970.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

December 1969 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Viva Max! See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,700,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastman Color)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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