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Top 200 Most Anticipated Films for 2014: #167. Michael Tully’s Ping Pong Summer

Ping Pong Summer

Director: Michael Tully
Writer(s): Michael Tully
Producers: George M. Rush, Ryan Zacarias, Brooke Bernard, Billy Peterson, Jeff Allard, Michael Gottwald
U.S. Distributor: Gravitas Ventures
Cast: Susan Sarandon, John Hannah, Lea Thompson, Amy Sedaris, Robert Longstreet, Marcello Conte

More 1980s than VH1’s own We Are the ’80s, all that is missing in Michel Tully’s latest (besides the look, sound and feel) is the eventual gloriously beat-up VHS box when this film hits home vid/Blu-ray. If Septien was like an uncomfortable hot dog eating contest, the down-right hilarious Ping Pong Summer is a buffet table delight: plenty of choice for the masses to gain a foothold in a coming-of-ager done right.

Gist: Set in 1985, Ping Pong Summer tells the story of 13-year-old Rad Miracle, a shy white kid who is obsessed with two things: ping pong and hip-hop culture. During his family’s annual summer vacation to Ocean City, Maryland, Rad makes a new best friend, falls in love, becomes the target of rich, racist local bullies, and finds an unexpected mentor in his outcast next-door neighbor. Ping Pong Summer is about that time in your life when you’re treated like an alien by everyone around you, even though you know, deep down, that you are as funky-fresh as it gets.

Release Date: Selected for Sundance, Rotterdam and the SXSW film fests, this was acquired this week and will be released during the summer.

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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