Raising Victor Vargas

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Raising Victor Vargas
Raising Victor Vargas.jpg
Directed by Peter Sollett
Produced by Peter Sollett
Robin O'Hara
Scott Macaulay
Alain de la Mata
Written by Peter Sollett
Eva Vives
Starring Victor Rasuk
Judy Marte
Melonie Diaz
Silvestre Rasuk
Kevin Rivera
Altagracia Guzman
Krystal Rodriguez
Music by Brad Jones
Roy Nathanson
Cinematography Tim Orr
Edited by Myron I. Kerstein
Distributed by Samuel Goldwyn Films
Release dates
  • 16 May 2002 (2002-05-16) (Cannes Film Festival)
  • 28 March 2003 (2003-03-28)
Running time
88 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $800,000 (estimated)

Raising Victor Vargas is a 2002 film directed by Peter Sollett, written by Sollett and Eva Vives. The film follows Victor, a Lower East Side teenager, as he deals with his eccentric family, including his strict grandmother, his bratty sister, and a younger brother who completely idolizes him. Along the way he tries to win the affections of Judy, who is very careful and calculating when it comes to how she deals with men. In a subplot, we also see Judy's friend Melonie in her own romantic adventure.

The film was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival.[1]


Victor is a teenager growing up in the Lower East Side of New York. He is a cocky young man, very sure of himself in his love life. He lives in a small apartment with his strict grandmother, bratty sister Vicki, and his younger brother Nino, who is just coming into his own sexuality and looks up to his girl-crazy brother highly.

At the beginning of the film, Victor is found in the bedroom of Fat Donna, a girl that many in the neighborhood consider overweight. Word quickly spreads throughout the community amongst his friends, although Victor continuously denies it happened. As this is a huge threat to his reputation, he sets his sights on the beautiful girl of the neighborhood, Judy.

Judy is a good-looking young woman who is continuously hit-on by men in her neighborhood, which makes her very careful in who she chooses in terms of her love life. When Victor comes on to her, she lies, telling him she has a boyfriend. When Victor finds out this isn't true, he enlists the help of Judy's little brother Carlos, on the condition that Victor introduce him to Vicki, whom he has a crush on. Judy ultimately says yes to Victor's advances, believing he will serve as a repellent toward the many men that hit on her.

During this time, Carlos has a crush on Vicki. We also see Judy's friend Melonie and her romantic dealings with Harold, Victor's friend. Their romance ultimately results in their sleeping together, and Melonie reveals to Harold the real reasons why Judy agreed to go out with Victor. Harold tells Victor, who goes to confront Judy. When Victor invites her over to dinner at his house, she believes he's doing so to impress his family and better his reputation. Ultimately, they decide to stay together, with Victor saying that he invited her to see his family to see who he really is.

Production notes[edit]

  • Filmed in Super 16 mm.
  • Filmed on location with non-professional actors in all of the roles.
  • The film's working title was "Long Way Home".
  • This feature film evolved from Peter Sollett's 2000 short film entitled Five Feet High and Rising, which featured many of the same cast members as Raising Victor Vargas.


  1. ^ "Festival de Cannes: Raising Victor Vargas". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-10-31. 

External links[edit]