Synopsis by Derek Armstrong
Robbing Peter, the debut feature from writer/director Mario F. de la Vega, tells three stories of crime and betrayal across the U.S.-Mexican border which intertwine toward a climactic finish. Unable to find work as a mechanic, Pedro (Louie Olivo Jr.) scores a job from local crime boss Don Epifiano (Victor Martinez) -- or rather, from the eccentric drug lord's pet rabbit, Fluffy. Fluffy orders Pedro to accompany a gringo pilot named Paul (Joe Keyes) on a drug deal into Arizona, but Pedro misses his meeting with Paul and tries to track him down through Paul's girlfriend, Shawna (Robin Simmons), whom he kidnaps. A flashback reveals more about Shawna and Paul, a recently paroled felon, and their history with Epifiano that landed Paul in prison. Add into the mix a hood named Danny (Alejandro Patino), who ropes his straight-laced brother Nelson (Pedro Pana) into a scheme to get a hold of the loot, and by the end of the third section, all involved have come to cross purposes. Robbing Peter was nominated for four 2004 Independent Spirit Awards: Best First Screenplay, Best Supporting Female (Simmons), Best Debut Performance (Olivo), and the John Cassavetes Award for best feature budgeted under 500,000 dollars.