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24 Ratings

Stand Clear of the Closing Doors

Directed by Sam Fleischner
United States, 2013


The story of Ricky, a 13-year-old boy with autism, and his mother, Mariana. An undocumented immigrant from Mexico, Mariana works long days cleaning houses while Ricky, deeply imaginative but painfully isolated, struggles to cope.

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Stand Clear of the Closing Doors Directed by Sam Fleischner

Awards & Festivals

Independent Spirit Awards

2015 | Nominee: Best Supporting Female

National Board of Review

2014 | Winner: Top Ten Independent Films

Tribeca Film Festival

2013 | Winner: Best Narrative Feature - Special Jury Mention

Director Sam Fleischner treats the boy’s excursion impressionistically, conveying his amazement with, and occasional aversion to, the cacophony and eccentric characters of the transit line. But the director’s view of the wider world is flat and schematic; the mother’s dealings with an indifferent school district, the ineffectual police, and her aloof ex-husband lack complexity, and the maudlin tone overwhelms any social insight.
July 16, 2014
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Like its hero, “Stand Clear of the Closing Doors” goes with the flow and has a chaotic and thrilling time but doesn’t know where to go or what to do with itself. Stunning as many of the film’s subjective sequences are, they grow repetitious during the story’s final third. So do the scenes of Ricky’s mother and sister waiting and worrying. Still, the film’s vision is original and beguiling.
May 23, 2014
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A touch too stilted and thin to prove truly essential, Stand Clear Of The Closing Doors may have been more resonant had it abandoned traditional narrative tropes altogether, but there’s great value in how the film recognizes cinema’s ability to make sense of the overwhelming noise of the subway system, and vice versa. If public transportation blurs the lines between public and private space by default, the movies do so by design.
May 22, 2014
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