Closed Doors

This excellent first feature from Youssef Chahine's production company is set during the Gulf War and analyses the descent into fundamentalist behaviour of a young Cairo truant. His lone mother, a cleaner, tries hard to keep the boy on the right path, but struggles to afford the extra fees demanded by his teacher, and hopes he won't realise their friendly neighbour is a prostitute. For his part, he tries to keep his mum in the dark about his new friend's identity (he's a street vendor) and the tuition he's receiving at a fundamentalist mosque. Despite an aura of tragic inevitability, this picture of how victims can be produced by poverty, irreconcilable conflicts between traditionalism and modernity, and unresolved psycho-sexual passions brewed in families with absent male figures, displays fine observation, expressive location work and gently nurtured performances.

By: WH

Release details

105 mins

Cast and crew

Atef Hetata
Atef Hetata
Mahmoud Hemida
Sawsan Badr
Ahmed Azmi
Manal Afifi
Ahmed Fouad Selim
Seif Abdel Rahman
Salwa Mohamed Ali
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