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A Little Game (2014)

A young girl finding her way around the city and her own life through chess lessons. This is also about being open to all the clues about your life and your options that surround you everyday.


Evan Oppenheimer
2 wins. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Janeane Garofalo ... Sarah Kuftinec
Ralph Macchio ... Tom
F. Murray Abraham ... Norman Wallach
Oona Laurence ... Becky
Rachel Dratch ... Aunt Diane
Olympia Dukakis ... YaYa
Tovah Feldshuh ... Blackstone Head of School
Kimberly Quinn ... Laura
Fina Strazza Fina Strazza ... Jez
Gabriel Rush ... Jaden
Fatima Ptacek ... Isabella
Frank Pando ... Officer
Jaden Michael ... Max 1
Catherine Urbanek ... Jessica
Gigi Cesarè ... Blackstone Academy Chess Club Private Schoolgirl (as Giovanna Cappetta)


Ignored by the rich kids at her new school and shaken by the death of her beloved grandmother, a 10-year-old girl finds an unlikely friend in the form of a feisty chess master, who uses the game to teach her about life. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Adventure | Family

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language and thematic elements


Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

26 April 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Little Game See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



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Did You Know?


Board for the final chess game was initially turned the wrong way. A white square should always be on the player's right side. See more »


When Max and Isabella are playing the chess game at the end of the movie, there is no way that Isabella could know how many seconds were left on the chess clock before the flag dropped. Chess clocks do not have second hands on them, just a little thing that turns to let you know which clock is running. It does not indicate seconds, however. See more »

Crazy Credits

The story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this production are fictitious. Although Washington Square Park is real. And you'll find a lot of these chess players there, if you're in the mood to lose five bucks. See more »

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User Reviews

The good outweighs the not-so-good
23 April 2015 | by rbarbieri-479-474533See all my reviews

A Little Game is nice, family-friendly (for the most part) movie with quality acting. The young stage actress, Makenna Ballard makes her big screen debut as Max, a 10-year-old Manhattenite. Olympia Dukakis as her "Ya-Ya" and F.Murray Abraham as her reluctant mentor. I watched it with my own 10-year-old who was engaged watching Max maneuver school, family, and life in general. From a mom's perspective, I thought the movie delivered a wonderful glimpse of the world through a young girl's eyes which, realistically, would include the fantasies playing out in her mind. From a Christian perspective, I was taken by surprise by a scene in which the parents share a beer. This doesn't offend me; I'm just not used to seeing casual alcohol use in a family movie. Also, there is a very brief - almost subversive - mention of the neighbor boy's two moms, as well as a cutaway of Max picturing herself with two dads. Though a common theme today, I thought it should be mentioned for families that prefer to filter worldly ideals. Overall, the importance of family, friendship, and love was portrayed stronger than anything else.

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