Settlers (2021) feels like a thought experiment. What if you are living in a dystopian world, where you and your family are (likely to be) alone on an entire planet – with everything else outside destroyed. Director Wyatt Rockefeller has succeeded in making us think, the what-if scenario. I liked the film, but only for a Raw rating, the tiny farm, the house and the martian sunset will stay in my mind for a long time. But, as a film it has faults, is slow, has logic gaps, features only four (plus one) characters in total, and will not appeal to a wider audience.
The British science fiction is about a family of three (father, mother and a young girl) living on a self-contained farm on Mars. A threat comes from a raider. How did the survivors adapt? What will they feel when they face the possibility of being the only humans alive?. These existential questions are explored through the characters of two strong women – one the wife of the farmer, and the other her young girl. The film rests on these two: Sofia Boutella as Ilsa, the wife, and Brooklynn Prince (from The Florida Project 2017) as the young girl Remmy – both were brilliant and so was Nell Tiger Free who plays the older Remmy.
Remember it is a low-budget film and is focused on exploring human instincts and survival, over any sci-fi technology.