From biscuit tins to blockbusters, the Seven Sisters and their surrounding landscape are familiar totems, as is the accompanying orchestral swell designed to sweep us away on a tide of patriotism. Cuckmere: A Portrait doesn’t do that.

A two-year collaboration between film-maker Cesca Eaton and composer Ed Hughes, Brighton Festival commission Cuckmere: A Portrait records the landscape through the seasons with an intricately scored orchestral accompaniment.

The film, shot by drone and from a light aircraft, takes inspiration, perhaps inevitably, from Eric Ravilious’s work - certainly the chalky sweep of the Downs we all know well. But there is strangeness too, an aerial shot of the frozen valley appears as a cave painting, while in another shot, the shape and colours of the river and its surrounds form a stunning, unexpected abstract.

Hughes’ score takes the river as its source, its restless energy bubbling through the strings and broadening out into rich, majestic textures in the wind and brass. Here is music that asks questions rather than making statements. Never the familiar ‘Behold, our magnificent cliffs’ but instead, ‘Why does this landscape fascinate us and what’s our place in it?’

In a nod to a predecessor, Hughes uses a rhythmic motif reminiscent of Holst’s ‘Mars’ to march us across the valley. Holst might have musically coined The Planets but Hughes and Eaton’s celebratory re-visioning of Cuckmere makes you wonder why he missed this one.