section Feature Film Competition

Between The Temples

  • Nathan Silver
  • US
  • 2024
  • 112

A suburban neurotic under pressure: 40-year-old Ben, now widowed, has recently moved in with his two mothers again. When the cantor loses his voice in the middle of a service, he quickly flees the synagogue – and meets his old music teacher Carla in a corner pub. The two warm to one another more quickly than their respective families would prefer.

Camerman Sean Price Williams is forever in close proximity to his cast of actors, most notably Jason Schwartzman and Carol Kane. Into the unequal yet mutually respectful partnership between the ageing Carla and listless Ben they nonchalantly breathe life that both leading characters had no longer expected to find. And the viewer is forever present, in amongst the moments of situation comedy and cringe-worthiness, as they gradually become part of this unconventional and yet completely normal every-day family existence. The constant state of both togetherness and conflict comes across as spontaneously as in real life – a result of the artistic leeway that director Nathan Silver deliberately left open to his acting pair in the form of an improvised script. The result is a lightly staged comedy about crises of meaning and faith and those unexpected happenings in life that always turn out differently to how we expect.

Text: Bernd Buder
English: Peter Rickerby


original title Between The Temples

international title Between The Temples

german title Between The Temples

JFBB section Feature Film Competition

  • director Nathan Silver

country/countries US

year 2024

duration 112

Portrait of Nathan Silver

Nathan Silver

BIO Nathan Silver is a writer, producer and director. His work has played festivals and venues around the world, including NYFF, Venice, Tribeca, Mar del Plata, AFI, Locarno, Rotterdam, Viennale, MoMa, Film at Lincoln Center, Museum of the Moving Image, La Cinémathèque Française, and Cineteca Nacional, Mexico. The New Yorker recently called Silver “a modernistic master of melodrama,” and said that “[he] proves himself to be one of the most original American independent filmmakers working today.” His latest feature BETWEEN THE TEMPLES starring Jason Schwartzman and Carol Kane premiered at Sundance followed by Berlin, and will be released by Sony Pictures Classics later this year.