‘Arcadian’ Review: Predictable Without Being Forgettable

Arcadian Review

With releases like A Quite Place and Bird Box, post-apocalyptic science fiction has been explored quite a bit in recent years. Although, as is the case with any genre, there is always room for well-told cinematic stories, no matter how common they appear on the surface. Directed by Ben Brewer, Arcadian delivers what you would expect from a picture of this nature, with a few welcome surprises along the way.

Struggling to survive against the monsters that appear at night, a father and two sons must come face to face with the threat they have been avoiding for many years. Nicolas Cage stars alongside Jaeden Martell, Maxwell Jenkins and Sadie Soverall.

Arcadian is everything you would expect from a science fiction film set after the world ended. Despite its many cliches, the movie manages to execute a solid narrative thanks to the core performances of the cast as well as the familial story that drives the events forward. As expected, Cage is excellent in his role but commendations must also be made to the actors playing his sons, Jaeden Martell and Maxwell Jenkins.

From a filmmaking perspective, this movie does a brilliant job of portraying the terrifying monsters that come out in the dark. Their movements and appearance are quite cartoonish but this adds an eery element to their existence, allowing them to be exceedingly creepy. As a whole, much of the movie is shot with a handheld camera. In the best moments, the shaky visuals enhance the realism of the situation. Sadly, in many other scenes, this approach to cinematography comes across as frustrating and somewhat amateurish.

Arcadian is a predictable film sprinkled with some unique elements that prevent it from being forgettable. If post-apocalyptic science fiction is a genre that you enjoy, then this surely is a feature that won’t disappoint.