Victor Rasuk, Judy Marte, Melonie Diaz, Altagracia Guzman, Silvestre Rasuk, Krystal Rodriguez
Victor: You know I made these, right?
Victor: You don’t believe me? Ma, right, I made these?
Grandma: To make you feel good…let’s say yes.
In his neighborhood, Victor (Rasuk) is known as a sort of ladies man. That is, until he’s caught with a girl nicknamed Fat Donna, and his reputation is sullied. In order to prove himself to his friends, he hits on a beautiful girl at a community pool and is rejected. He’s persistent though, and eventually they begin spending time together. Meanwhile, Victor must deal with a sister who seems to hate him, a brother who worships him, and a grandmother who thinks Victor is being a bad influence on his younger siblings.
I liked this one. Didn’t love it, but it has a certain charm to it. Victor is a little annoying at times, but his personality is a sort of barrier he puts up in order to stay afloat in the far-from-affluent neighborhood they live in. It’s interesting to see the barrier slowly crumble as he realizes how much he likes Judy (Marte). Of course, she has a barrier too. She’s sick of being hit on by obnoxious, vulgar guys on every street corner (and we get a hilarious example of that), so she always tells guys that she already has a man. She initially uses her friendship with Victor as another way to brush off guys. She doesn’t have to invent a boyfriend, she can just say Victor is her man.
Most of the performances here were good and had a natural feel to them, but I especially liked the scenes with Judy Marte and Melonie Diaz. They worked well together. In fact, I think Melonie Diaz might have been my favorite thing about the movie. I couldn’t remember where I’d seen her before, but now I know it was Be Kind Rewind. Yeah, she was my favorite thing about that movie too.
Some of the family conflict got a little repetitive and the setting wasn’t the most photogenic I’ve seen, but none of that ruined the movie for me. Of course, it didn’t elevate it to a higher level either.
Basically it’s a story about family, responsibility and young, awkward love. It’s funny and touching at times, you just have to get through a few slow parts and one very overprotective grandmother.
You can’t just kick a minor out of the house because you think he’s being a bad influence on his siblings. So unfair…
10 – 2 for some slow sections and repetitiveness – .7 because I thought the setting was filmed in a sort of blah way at times – .2 for a few performances that just weren’t up to par with others = 7.1