Stand Clear of the Closing Doors
Ricky, an autistic 13-year-old, embarks on an underground odyssey that would give Orpheus pause: 11 days patiently lost on New York’s subway system, idly drifting through its labyrinthine tunnels and encountering the figures of urban mythology who ride these subterranean rails. Above ground, a frantic search is launched by his guilt-ridden mother (whose scolding may have driven Ricky away from their humble seaside home in Far Rockaway, Queens). With Hurricane Sandy lurking menacingly on the horizon, she has precious little time to locate her son.
Sam Fleischner’s suspenseful and fascinating drama has been celebrated by The New York Times’ Stephen Holden for delivering "as intense and indelible an immersion in the real New York as I have seen in a long time ... [The film is] completely, exhilaratingly alive." Furthermore, it represents an incredible example of artistic resourcefulness as Fleischner not only managed the practically impossible task of shooting guerrilla-style on the New York subway (releases were signed between stops), but also rolled with the devastation wrought by a natural disaster, masterfully incorporating it into his already fraught narrative.
"Wonderfully witty and understated ... A small miracle of a film."—Stephen Holden, New York Times
"Fascinating and beautiful ... an impressionistic record of the subway experience circa exactly right now."—Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice
"An exceptional film ... richly textured and fully engaging."—Amy Taubin, Art Forum