Ping Pong Playa Reviews

Top Critic
Michael Esposito
Chicago Tribune
October 18, 2008
Charming despite requisite training sequences and a cartoonishly evil opponent.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Ted Fry
Seattle Times
September 12, 2008
Ping Pong Playa falters on formula only occasionally, but otherwise remains a consistently agreeable romp that strikes just the right chord of ironic sentimentally.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
September 11, 2008
There's no resisting the movie's antic affability or its irreverence, even with Chris's unavoidable progression toward the mature appreciation of his roots.
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Sheri Linden
Los Angeles Times
September 5, 2008
The movie doesn't take its broad, jokey premise terribly far, but it manages to sustain a goofy-sweet comic energy and offers sly observations about assimilation, sibling rivalry and the art of competitive maternal bragging.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
September 5, 2008
A decidedly lightweight amusement, the first comedy from documentary filmmaker Jessica Yu is the sort of movie that works best if you keep your expectations low.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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G. Allen Johnson
San Francisco Chronicle
September 5, 2008
A mostly amusing, appealing family comedy about going from pretender to contender, in life as well as pingpong.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
September 5, 2008
Interest in Playa lies in the fact that director Jessica Yu is a documentarian with a daring taste in subjects. Yet in her first non-doc feature, she plays it safe; even the championship showdown feels polite.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
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Nathan Lee
New York Times
September 5, 2008
There's a deeper, touching acknowledgment of braggadocio as persona, how the commodified dissent of hip-hop lends itself to masking insecurities.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
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Noel Murray
AV Club
September 4, 2008
Aside from the casting and the location shooting, there's not much to distinguish Ping Pong Playa from Ladybugs or The Mighty Ducks.
Full Review | Original Score: C
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Mark Holcomb
Time Out
September 4, 2008
The setup has been trotted out a million times before, and the movie's novel SoCal Chinese-American milieu only partially excuses the familiarity.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/6
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Justin Lowe
Hollywood Reporter
September 3, 2008
A winning comedy that entertainingly elevates a low-profile sport.
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Peter Debruge
Variety
September 3, 2008
A good, clean, fun comedy that uses a table tennis championship to crack inside jokes about Los Angeles' Chinese-American community.
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Andrea Gronvall
Chicago Reader
September 3, 2008
This thin premise can't sustain a feature, and the racial and gay jokes are jarring, but the child actors are cute.