3000 Years of Longing

Where I Watched It: iTunes

English Audio Description provided By: Deluxe

Narrated By: Laura Post and jedidiah Barton

It’s sort of amazing that George Miller has so many fans of his work, since he can’t seem to be held down to a specific style or genre. Obviously, a lot of new fans found him when Mad Max Fury Road surpassed expectations, but the same guy who made that film, just made a rather simple movie about two people having a long, rather fanciful, conversation. Oh, and don’t forget Babe: Pig in The City

In 3000 years of longing, Idris Elba plays a genie, or Djinn if that’s your flavor, literally in a bottle. And after Tilda Swinton rubs him the right way, he comes out with the usual rules about three wishes. But Swinton isn’t in a hurry, and has clearly read enough morality tales that she wants to learn more before making the wrong wish. So, the two engage in conversations involving the other times Elba has appeared, and how those wishes worked out. Can she trust him? Might she possibly be falling for him? Will she ever make a wish?

These are all questions Miller tries to answer in a film that meanders a bit, trying to be a couple of different things at once. It’s quite a spectacle when it wants to be, allowing Elba to exhibit the use of his powers, or by showing us the absurdity of historical wishes, but it’s also reserved, in so much that Swinton is temporarily bound to Elba, and this is not a woman who rushes into things. Perhaps, the longing felt is on both ends, but you’ll have to watch the movie to see how that plays out.

There really aren’t any other cast members of note, and somehow even counting babe: Pig in The City in the mix, it feels like a disappointment for what Miller has shown he’s capable of. Like, we haven’t all seen Aladdin, and that final wish. If he wanted to sustain the plot, one of Elba’s initial “rules” should be “I can’t be freed by a wish.” Then, every 90’s kid wouldn’t be waiting for Swinton to pull an Aladdin.

The audio description here is fantastic as usual from the team at Deluxe, as they focus on the more visually striking elements, and things not based in reality that Elba is able to do, like change his size. He also has an unnatural eye color. But, the narration also helps in the flashbacks to wishers past, as some of the dialogue is subtitled, hence the multiple narrators, and some of the wishes are bizarre. When you can wish anything from your imagination, and a film is literally centered around it, you can understand the importance of us knowing visually what the heck is going on.

I think this got a little too beaten down, but also, I’m not sure this is a rush out and see it type of film. If you enjoy these actors, or miller, maybe see it when it appears on a streaming service down the line. it’s not bad, but it’s not great.

Final Grade: C+

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