Incluvie Foundation Gala - Learn More

Racism in A Second Chance: Rivals!

The sequel to the first film, A Second Chance: Rivals! talks about Maddy combating cyberbullying and racism.

A Second Chance: Rivals! (2019)

4 / 5
3 / 5

A Second Chance: Rivals! is the 2019 sports movie that is the sequel to A Second Chance (2011). Emily Morris reprises her role as Maddy, a young gymnast who participated in the gymnastics squad.

A Second Chance: Rivals! is labeled as a part of the “Representation Matters Collection” of films because the main topics and themes cover racism and cyberbullying. The opening scene shows Tayla, a 12-year-old gymnast, looking at herself in the mirror and assuming she’s fat since she saw mean comments about her appearance; she stops eating lunch. This shows viewers how cyberbullying affects many girls at this age, as words can hurt.

Maddy’s position as a coach for 12-year-old gymnasts mirrors her experience as a competitive gymnast when she was around that age. This connects the events to the first movie when she was only a girl. Scenes alternate between Maddy’s flashbacks and the present. Emily Morris has grown since the events of the first movie. The setting takes place in Australia, like the first film. She references the title, A Second Chance: Rivals! when she fixes the mistakes she has made.

The gymnasts

Viewers can infer from the harsh judging of the first gymnastics competition of the season that racism plays a major role in sports movies. One gymnast, Kira, who is a woman of color, faces backlash from the judges and is forbidden to go back to gymnastics because of the racist backlash and biased judging. A flashback scene of the gymnast’s mother from the framed photograph and a small article shows viewers the suffering the mother went through when she was a competitor.

Since cyberbullying and racism are the main topics, viewers can see online and text messages on screen to better grasp these messages. Kira helps Tayla overcome cyberbullying about her body image; she herself combats racism from biased judging.

Viewers who like sports movies will find A Second Chance: Rivals! to bring strong representation, especially to young viewers.