Film of the Day: Arcadia (2017)

Arcadia
The spiral is a recurring image in this frenetic feature. Photo: Hopscotch Films/ BFI

A transfixing and laudatory montage documentary, Arcadia makes a collage out of films and archival footage to create a celebration of Britain’s relationship with the earth.

The land on which we set our feet has home to all sorts of pagan, Christian, secular and childhood rituals that take us closer to nature or further away. Paul Wright’s documentary is not the conventional kind; instead it induces a trance-like state of awe, with the best of British film at its centre.

Provocative and poetic, Paul Wright comments, “there’s a sense of continuity but also of change, building towards the darker side as the film progresses.” He described it as feeling, “like there’s something in the air now” and that, “It became a blurring in the film to show the complexity of where we are just now, while also looking at where we may be going next.”

Set to a hypnotising score from Portishead’s Adrian Utley and Will Gregory from Goldfrapp.

Arcadia – Tonight at 12.45am on BBC Four

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