New Jerusalem

Rick Alverson

Will Oldham excels as a naive, cocky American who's found God. His co-worker at a tyre shop is an Irishman who has served in Afghanistan. With little to do at work, the two dance around their inner struggles and cultural differences. A meditative character study.

Musician R. Alverson, well-known from the band Spokane, made this meditative, observing film about friendship and vulnerability after making The Builder. Sean and Ike work at a tyre centre - one is wrestling with himself while the other has found solace in the Lord. The Irish immigrant Sean is coming to terms with a war trauma he got in Afghanistan. The evangelical Ike (singer Will Oldham, aka Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy) tries to persuade him to choose God in this confusing period. Sean cannot bear the chaos of the world around him any more and is inclined to embrace a clear-cut religious image of the world. In the local diner, they talk about the end of the world and the comfort of believing in something, even if it is only an obvious reassurance. In this character study, Alverson used many calm close-ups to give the men time to reflect on their lives.

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