BAY AREA DOCS: TOP SPIN

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November 21 only
Filmmaker Sara Newens in person for Q&A after the screening!
Top Spin’ is table tennis’ ‘Hoop Dreams’ – LA Times

lily_zhangInside a cramped gym tucked behind a California strip mall, the clacking sounds of hollow plastic balls whirling at 80 mph 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 through 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.

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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.

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Directed by Sara Newens & Mina T. Son, 81 min, 2014 English & Mandarin w/ English Subtitles, DCP

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