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10 user 2 critic

Second Serve (1986)

Fact-based story about tennis pro Renee Richards, whose player status was challenged in 1976 when it was revealed that she was a transsexual. Flashback to 1964 and meet Richard Radley, a ... See full summary »

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(book), | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Richard Radley / Renee Richards
... Dr. Beck
... Josh
... Gwen
... Meriam
Richard Venture ... Dr. David Radley
... Dr. Roberto Granato
... Dr. Sadie M. Bishop
... Dr. Harry Benjamin
... Bill
... Danielle (as Nina Van Pallandt)
... Gene Scott
... Ross
... Nightclub Singer
Ray Girardin ... Grigsby
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Storyline

Fact-based story about tennis pro Renee Richards, whose player status was challenged in 1976 when it was revealed that she was a transsexual. Flashback to 1964 and meet Richard Radley, a successful New York doctor with a great lifestyle, a flashy girl friend, and a secret life. Seems like the good doctor likes to dress up in women's clothes and visit Manhattan. His psychiatrist mother refuses to deal with him and sends him to a colleague who diagnoses with a psychotic gender confusion, which he says can be unlearned. After a failed marriage and fatherhood, he gives in to the transsexual operation and becomes Renee for good with a new life in California. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

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Vanessa Redgrave stars as Dr. Renee Richards. The man who became a champion female tennis player. A true story. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Sport

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Release Date:

13 May 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I Change My Life  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Vanessa Redgrave, Martin Balsam and Louise Fletcher. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ugly Betty: Brothers (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

A decent stab at making gender dysphoria understandable
31 January 2018 | by See all my reviews

Mine is not so much a review but a rebuttal of the negative reviews here. One reviewer thinks that taking female hormones change a male voice to a female one and eliminates a beard. This is completely untrue. The voice has to be retrained and the beard removed via electrolysis. This is hard to do and takes a long and painful time to complete. Many have said that Renee Richards had an unfair advantage when competing against cis-women. This is a falsehood. The female hormones that Richards would have taken would have significantly reduced the muscle mass and strength from that when she was a man. The only advantage she would have had, perhaps and only perhaps, was that gained from being a man and the superior sports hand eye coordination and technique that would entail. Having said that, Raskin wasn't that great a player as a man in that environment. Others have said a man changing sex will never be a true woman. But he will never again be a true man. So that then creates a voluntary inter-sex, the eunuch. This position has existed since the dawn of human history and therefore should be treated with the utmost respect and admiration for it is a brave and committed path. Transsexuals hurt no-one and give much love back, when allowed to do so.


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