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Tonight 10pm at Alamo South Lamar! VIVA THE 'NAM - the feature length Vietnam War Movie made with Gi Joes!

Hola all. Massawyrm here. This is the very thing the Alamo Drafthouse was built for and Austin audiences live to watch: a feature length, stop motion, Vietnam War spoof made entirely with 12” action figures and made over the course of 8 ½ years in an Austin garage. And it is playing tonight, Alamo South Lamar at 10PM. I wrote about this film 8 months ago and I’m so happy to see that it is still around. Live in Austin? Have you seen it yet? No? Then do so now! While you have the chance. Cult cinema at its best – deranged, damaged genius. Here’s what I wrote at the beginning of the year: VIVA THE ‘NAM is a feature length, 100 minute stop motion film shot on 16mm about Holmes, a not-too-bright recruit who is drafted and sent to the hellpit that is Viet-fucking-nam. There he slowly loses his mind and becomes a crazed, bloodthirsty idiot always in the wrong place at the wrong time. What works about this film is that it isn’t simply a series of riffs on Vietnam war films – don’t get me wrong, there IS plenty of that – but it has an honest to god narrative driving the film from frame one. Holmes is an unwitting Lt. Dan, cursed to die in war as every generation before him has. He wants no part of his legacy, but the US Military has different ideas. From that point on we watch as he slowly loses his mind, wandering through scene after offensive scene lambasting the US military, Vietnam War films, hippie freaks and the era itself. Filled with dozens of recognizable characters (and actors), including people you would never imagine had an action figure (one friend was prompted to ask “Wait, is that Ron Livingston”), this runs the gamut of subtle and sublime on up to the blatantly ridiculous. Much as you’d expect from something like this, it is something of a mixed bag. There are a few rough patches where the film slows down a bit, but invariably it always picks back up with another uproarious scene of absurdity. And the ending is so clusterfuck insane and side-splittingly funny, that it makes you forgive any flaws that arise. Come out and support this wonderful little passion project and plan to stick around for the Q&A as the filmmakers will be in attendance. Hope to see you there! Until next time friends, Massawyrm
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Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 28, 2010, 10:29 a.m. CST


    by D.Vader

    I can't see it.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 10:29 a.m. CST


    by Tacom

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 10:30 a.m. CST

    Damn. Second.

    by Tacom

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 10:37 a.m. CST

    Ambitious? Yes. I'll give the guy that.

    by theguilty1

    But I can't imagine actually sitting through this.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 10:43 a.m. CST

    Can't I just watch it on YouTube?


    Like I normally do with this kind of stuff?

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 11:09 a.m. CST

    needed to dream a little bigger

    by Seph_J

    yes, maybe it was ambitious, but I just wanted to see them cut loose in Vietnam, you know, should the mekong folding over onto itself- shit like that. <p> to be honest, I did sleep through most of it... but I was fucking underwhelmed by what I did see. <p> Doing a vietnam epic with action figures is good (I repeat there ARE good things about it) but generally it just wasn't as good as other people told me it was going to be... and therefore I didn't like it very much. <p> And I went for a piss break during the bit when the Stallone, Willis and Schwarzenegger dolls were all on at the same time... but I do love film so much.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 12:24 p.m. CST

    8 years?

    by yourSTEPDADDY

    thats what i call too much dedication

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 1:20 p.m. CST

    Where is the Barbie Porn?

    by LeftFoot

    Hasn't technology reached the point where we can get some high quality Barbie porn?

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 2:13 p.m. CST

    looks quite funny and a lil like......

    by The_Cliffster

    team america world police....

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 2:25 p.m. CST

    I bet these guys are pissed that Robot Chicken

    by BetterCallSaul

    stole their thunder. And if this ever gets famous, some kids will say that they ripped off Robot Chicken.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 3:15 p.m. CST

    Someone should have put a stop to this...

    by Mr.Stiggs

    There is no way in hell that I could sit through that for 100 minutes. I found it difficult to watch the 30 second Youtube clips. I appreciate the passion that went into msking this film but all that time and effort should have been spent on creating something a bit more...uh...entertaining.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 3:29 p.m. CST

    It would be one thing if this were good

    by StarryNight

    but it looks quite lame and seems to rely on nothing more than its gimmick.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 4:55 p.m. CST

    Han Solo?

    by Bouncy X

    did they use a Han doll for that second clip with the black guy? cuz thats funny if so. i'm wondering if they could have minimized the jerky movement had they used some computer program to knock that down a few notches. its the one thing that makes it most annoying to sit through. although i'm sure thats partly due to the limited movement of those dolls.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Where's BIG LOB?

    by GibsonUSA Returns

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 6:03 p.m. CST

    That dude looks a LOT like Han Solo.

    by Royston Lodge

    Are we certain all the action figures are G.I. Joes?

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 7:41 p.m. CST

    lol @ the Han Solo doll

    by Neck_Lucas

    Its like trying to watch Christopher Reeve in a different role other than superman...Total action figure typecasting.

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 7:42 p.m. CST

    And who directed that? Paul fucking Greengrass?

    by Neck_Lucas

    goddamn stop motion shaky cam

  • Aug. 28, 2010, 11:23 p.m. CST

    Yep, that's Han Solo

    by Inexplicable_Nuclear_Balls

    I'd think they could get a bigger release for this if they promote that Harrison Ford is in the film.

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 12:18 a.m. CST


    by SkidMarkedUndies


  • Aug. 29, 2010, 2:16 a.m. CST

    "Ode to G.I. Joe"

    by njscribe44

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 2:17 a.m. CST

    "Ode to G.I. Joe"

    by njscribe44

    I remember a short film in the late '80s with the old 12-inch Joes dancing to some Motown song. This looks pretty good.

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 2:22 a.m. CST

    All "firsters" must DIE!

    by Skyway Moaters

    I'm lookin' at you

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 2:24 a.m. CST

    Lookin' at you Tacome! Even though you were: SECOND!

    by Skyway Moaters

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 3 a.m. CST


    by JonChambers

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 3:01 a.m. CST

    Richard Gere should've used a GI JOE instead of a GERBIL!!!!!!

    by JonChambers

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 3:04 a.m. CST


    by JonChambers

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 6:49 a.m. CST


    by stvnhthr

    Is this coming to dvd anytime soon? Will they put Cong of the Dead on the disc? I want to see this so badly!

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 7:28 a.m. CST

    You want Barbie Porn? You've got Barbie Porn!

    by JustinSane

    Okay, it's more like Barbie TORTURE porn, but still...

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 7:30 a.m. CST

    This showed up on AICN about an year ago

    by ricarleite2

    and I was wondering when I would see this again. Thanks Massa

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 5:07 p.m. CST

    Their three-part "War: American Style"

    by Dennis_Moore

    on Youtube is brilliant. Looking forward to this.

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Not very funny

    by Teddy Artery

    But admirable effort, since I've made enough stop-motion movies to know the difference.

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 5:57 p.m. CST

    Those clips -- not funny :(

    by Prof. Pop-Cult

    I don't want to rag on this passion project, but these two clips... were they supposed to be funny? And it does feel like that Robot Chicken has covered (and continues to cover) this creative ground.

  • Aug. 29, 2010, 10:54 p.m. CST

    Twisted Mego Theatre

    by Bootskin

    ..covered the ground Robot Chicken has ripped off, so...there's that too...

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 12:58 a.m. CST

    Most people don't know the title for War and Peace

    by RPLocke

    was really War, what is it good for"

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 1:21 a.m. CST


    by Shermdawg

    Same guys.

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 7:24 a.m. CST

    Same guys?

    by Bootskin

    Well then...color me stupid...

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 9:47 a.m. CST

    I give them A for an effort...

    by tomimt

    but that doesn't look like something I'd be willing to spend 100 minutes on, at least not after those couple of clips.

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 2:05 p.m. CST

    Watch War: American Style, not just the clips.

    by Dennis_Moore

  • Aug. 30, 2010, 10:39 p.m. CST

    You are a choir boy to me! Choir boy! Choir boyyyaaaaghhh

    by Dogmatic

    Hahahah this looks can we watch the whole thing??