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A Knock Out
Netherlands, 2004, 53 minutes, Color, DVD, Subtitled
Order No. W05882
Boxing champion Michele Aboro grew up in South London, where life for a girl was never easy, let alone for a mixed-race lesbian girl. Thanks to her tenacious spirit and an uncanny talent for combat sports, she put her difficult past behind her and managed to sign a contract with the biggest boxing promoter in Europe. She won all 21 fights, 18 of them with a knockout - an exceptional achievement in women’s boxing. But despite her spectacular record in the ring, her career came to a sudden halt when her promoter broke her contract under the belief that she was not "promotable."

Refusing to vamp up her image and pose naked in magazines, this undefeated world champion was abandoned by an industry more interested in selling sex than sport. A KNOCK OUT interweaves Aboro’s personal story with interviews with boxers whose wild success strikes a painful contrast with Aboro's struggles. Searching for logic behind Aboro’s case, this poignant documentary captures a universal story of fighting for one's identity and offers a probing look at the intersection of gender, ethnicity, sexuality and the increased commercialization of women's sports.


  • Festival Vrouwenfilms Assen
  • Out On Film - Atlanta Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
  • Rhode Island International Film Festival
  • Atlanta Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
  • International Documentary Film Festival, Amsterdam (IDFA)
  • New Festival- New York Gay & Lesbian Film Fest
  • Inside Out - Toronto Lesbian & Gay Film & Video Festival
  • Out on Film - Atlanta Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
  • Oakland International Black LGBT Film Festival
  • Outfest Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
  • Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival
  • San Francisco Lesbian & Gay Film Festival

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    “Demonstrates how hard it is not to compromise what you stand for in the face of sponsors’ demands, the importance of remaining yourself and following your passion.”
    International Documentary Film Festival, Amsterdam

    “Tessa Boerman and Samuel Reiziger outline, in an almost classically tragic life story of Michele Aboro, an image of a hyper commercial and frantic circus of professional boxers.”
    NRS Handelsblad

    “A compelling and revealing story.”
    Vrij Nederland Magazine

    “…weaves together a compelling mix of news footage, highlights of boxing matches [and] interviews with this articulate and extraordinarily gifted athlete…Highly recommended.”
    Educational Media Reviews Online

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us