Three Thousand Years Of Longing is a George Miller film.
George Miller’s Three Thousand Years of Longing is a dark fantasy drama film starring Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton. It is an adaptation of the short story “The Djinn in the Nightingale’s Eye” by A. S. Byatt. Miller is best known for his Mad Max films, Happy Feet, Babe, and The Witches of Eastwick. Elba just recently starred in BEAST, pitting him against a lion, and just a couple of weeks later, he is now a genie.
Dr. Alithea Binnie (Tilda Swinton) is an academic. She is content with life and a creature of reason. While in Istanbul attending a conference, she encounters a Djinn (Idris Elba). He offers her three wishes in exchange for his freedom. This presents two problems. First, she doubts that he is real, and second, because she is a scholar of story and mythology, she knows all the cautionary tales of wishes gone wrong. The Djinn pleads his case by telling her fantastical stories of his past. Eventually, she is beguiled and makes a wish that surprises them both.
After watching the trailer, I thought I was walking into a twisted and fun spectacle. But, to my surprise, the trailer is more entertaining than the film itself. It wasn’t easy to sustain the entire 1 hour and 48 minutes because it was a story about stories. The film visually mesmerizes, but stylish cinematography cannot win moviegoers alone. The movie is supposed to be an imaginative retelling of historical folklores and a cautionary tale about wishes. But unfortunately, it feels more like several “historical” stories pasted together to tell the love stories of Elba’s Djinn. This film’s themes are Love is Powerful, Hate Prevails, and the dangers of wishes.
I give Three Thousand Years of Longing 2.5 out of 5 stars. It might be visually impressive with star power, but it is a mystical film without any magic or intrigue. It will be in theaters beginning August 26th.