Top Spin

Grips, exhilarates and breaks hearts like the 1994 film "Hoop Dreams."


Top Spin

Special Events:

Laemmle and First Run Features bring you a bevy of ping pong related activities August 19th - 26th at select Laemmle locations! Events include:
  • Raffle to Win an Olympic Quality JOOLA Ping Pong Table! Official Rules.
  • Live Table Tennis Exhibitions by Elite Players
  • Lots of Filmmaker and Athlete Q&A’s


Inside a cramped gym tucked behind a California strip mall, the clacking sounds of hollow plastic balls whirling at 80 miles per hour are punctuated by exclamations of victory and bitter cries of defeat. Welcome to the hidden world of competitive ping pong. Three fiercely committed teenagers battle their way thrSceneough the world of elite table tennis. With devoted parents by their side, they have traded normal teenage life for a chance to represent their country on the world's biggest athletic stage: the Olympics.

Top Spin reveals how Ariel, Michael, and Lily balance rivalry, teenage awkwardness and friendships as every match impacts their fledgling confidence. Regularly juggling six-hour training sessions, overseas tournaments, and schoolwork, they inevitably sacrifice the typical teenage rites of passage. An inside look at offbeat sport, Top Spin turns one of America's favorite pastimes on its head and reveals a coming-of-age story where success and failure come down to mere millimeters.

“Terrific...thrilling slow-motion demonstrations of game technique.” (Chuck Wilson, L.A. Weekly)
Not Rated
Documentary, Sport
English, Mandarin
Sara Newens
Mina T Son
Ronnie Scheib, Variety

The road to the Olympics is paved with Ping-Pong balls for three teen hopefuls in Top Spin, Mina T. Son and Sara Newens’ quick-moving, kinetically edited sports documentary. At this level of play, speed and coordination prove paramount — qualities that are reflected in co-helmer/editor Newens’ ...

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