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Ping Pong (2012)

Les D'Arcy , Rune Forsberg , Hugh Hartford  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Les D'Arcy, Rune Forsberg, Sun Lao, Terry Donlon, Dorothy DeLow
  • Directors: Hugh Hartford
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: DOCURAMA
  • DVD Release Date: September 10, 2013
  • Run Time: 76 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00CBVWX7E
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,763 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

A twinkly inspirational documentary about eight competitors in the World Over-80 Table Tennis Championships in Inner Mongolia. The ping-pongers are all in their 80s and 90s; one Australian woman is a centurion. Most of the players have been athletes all their lives, but one German woman only took the sport up as an octogenarian after suffering a stroke. The sport seems to have re-energized her. The film shows that the advanced masters scene is like those in other sports, with rivalries, egomania and even dirty tricks -- like stealing an opponent's bat. Losing doesn't get any less painful with age.

Special Features:

Video EPK; Press Appearances

Review

Who could have imagined there were people over 100 years old with more passion and determination than most people 1/5th their age! The film is baffling, inspiring and sweet, and it's wonderful to see how ping-pong has transformed their lives. --Susan Sarandon

Delightful, hilarious and completely inspirational --Empire

An unabashed crowd-pleaser bouncing between sweetly satirical and sincerely moving --Total Film

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
(6)
4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
I love documentaries about uncommon sports because the filmmaker never knows how they will end. They are a lot more interesting to me than "reality TV" shows because the filmmaker can only edit so much - since they have tighter budgets than the big TV networks. Over the years I'm enjoyed documentaries on Crossword puzzle competitions ("Wordplay"), marching bands ("Drumline") and more. Watching "Ping Pong" was just as much fun. Yes, it's about table tennis - not the most exciting sport. BUT, this is the" International OVER 80s" completion held in China where all the competitors (and there are over 2,000 from over 52 countries!) compete. The reigning world champion is Australian Dorothy leLow who is 100 years old. (Yes, you read that right!). She needs a wheel chair to get around but put her at the end of a ping pong table and she is amazing. Co-Directors Anson and Hugh Hartford, introduce you to eight players - including one player who is given just one week to live - and follow them through out the brief 76 minute film. The nice thing about ping pong is that each game is quick, usually less than a minute and a match is 11 points. With tight edition, and a neat upbeat soundtrack of original music, the time flies by.

The film is in English but has English subtitles when the non-English-speaking athletes (and they are athletes; one guy in his eighties lifts barbells to train!) are interviewed, but that is not very often.

The DVD has two bonuses: The Theatrical Trailer and a few extended interviews and Deleted Scenes. But it's the feature film that is the center of attraction.
If you like documentaries about real people in real competitions, I think you'll like Ping Pong. I know I did.

I hope you found this review both informative and helpful.

Steve Ramm
"Anything Phonographic"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
When looking at a documentary feature, it is often difficult to differentiate the film from its subjects. I don't necessarily think that "Ping Pong," as a movie, represents very ambitious filmmaking. Its structure follows a very expected course, it might have benefited from a more in-depth approach to its subjects, and its editing doesn't particularly keep the film moving along. However, none of that matters. I suspect that "Ping Pong" enthusiasts will emerge to declare this an instant masterpiece. Why? Better yet, why not? The topic of the movie revolves around eight championship tennis table competitors from around the globe who are all past eighty years old. One is actually 100! As one of the other players states it, (and I may be paraphrasing a bit) "I'll be happy if I can stand up at 100!" Amen. And it is just this type of personal inspiration that will make this a crowd pleasing success. While so many people relinquish life's pleasures with age, these senior athletes embrace life to its very core. And what could be more uplifting than that?

Of course, the film references some more unpleasant subjects like dementia, heart disease, and physical deterioration. One of the players is even in late stage cancer. But these concerns and health issues are kept to a minimum as the film focuses on competition. And that's exactly as it should be. For in many cases, it is the thrill of the game that serves as the most important mental treatment to what ails our crew. As the movie opens we are introduced to the eight champions (all heavily decorated) who will be competing at the World Table Tennis championship in Inner Mongolia for those over 80.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The spirit never grows old October 28, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This was an utterly charming video/documentary on several 80-somethng table tennis players and their quest for competitive success. I recommend it as a fascinating case study in the human spirit and ego. It was certainly worth my time and effort to track it down and watch it.
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