From the Episode: Daddy Dearest

First Match

| March 10, 2014

Columbia University / 2012 / 14 minutes / English / Color

“If you bust your teeth tomorrow, I don’t wanna hear it.”

Co-presented as part of the PBS Online Film Festival. Watch. Vote. Share this film today!

Winners never quit. The chant is a mantra for the high school wrestling team, probably no more so than for 14 year old Monique, a.k.a. Mo. Being the only girl in the recently gender integrated team, her divided world is a challenge even off the mat, as she is unable to breach a connection with other girls and is taunted by the boys. Add to this her single father, a working class ex-wrestler who takes a supportive, but cautionary, stance to his daughter’s involvement in the sport. But even amidst the headlocks and grip holds, there are things that even Mo couldn’t predict and emotions still left to wrestle.

Written and directed by Olivia Newman. Principal cast: Nyasa Bakker, Anslem Richardson and Zach Lombardo.

First Match

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Olivia Newman

Olivia Newman

Read more about Olivia Newman, the director of First Match.

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