An Enchanting Aladdin Rehash —Review Of Three Thousand Years of Longing (2022)

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I recently watched a thriller that featured an actor I so much admire, Idris Elba, and I loved it. Then I checked the streaming site where I get the latest flicks and behold, another of his movies stared right at me! I knew I must watch it.

Like this post title says, this movie is a beautiful and swooning rehash of the age-old Arabian night story of Aladdin. And before you roll your eyes and wave this movie aside, finish this review to know why this movie is watchworthy.

Three Thousand Years of Longing (2022) is a fantasy romantic film written and directed by George Miller. I understand it's an adaptation of the 1994 novella titled The Djinn in the Nightingale's Eye by A. S. Byatt.


Source: YouTube

This movie focuses on a British scholar, Alithea Binnie (played by Tilda Swinton), who deals with stories and narratology. On a trip to Istanbul, she buys a fine, antique bottle from a shop, takes it to her hotel room and while cleaning it, a genie (djinn) is released.

Djinn (played by Idris Elba) asks Alithea to make three wishes so he can be free but she refuses believing he is a trickster. To prove he is not, Djinn tells stories of how he was imprisoned in the jar. These stories involve Djinn's relationships with the Queen of Sheba, a concubine of Suleiman the Magnificent and the youngest wife of a Turkish merchant. This leads to a relationship between the two characters. What wishes do you think Alithea made?

Your Wish Is My Command

This is one fascinating fantasy and I can say it has two major parts. The first deals with convincing Alithea to make her wishes by telling tales of the past.

One puzzling thing about Alithea is that she claims she is content and has no need for wishes. I wonder if that is possible? Is there a person on earth that has no wish or desire that they want granted by some all-powerful being? Djinn knew he had his work cut out for him to convince Alithea to make a wish. Her so-called contentment almost made Djinn lash out because it meant he would not be free from his ancient incarceration.

The second revolves around Alithea's wish which leads to the blossom of romance between the two main characters.

If there is fate, can we escape it?

Could it be Djinn's fate to remain imprisoned in the bottle for all eternity? This movie is centered around the storytelling of a djinn’s former lifetimes and his fight for freedom. One particular feature I commend the director for is the clash and smooth intermingle of old and modern times. Viewers are transported back in time to the 17th, 18th and mid-19th centuries through flashback scenes as Djinn tells his story while knitting it to his present circumstances with Alithea.

The grand visual effects, perfect transitions and picturesque sceneries are impressive. They are smooth and well coordinated. The costumes and set designs are colourful. This is a story we are familiar with (Aladdin) but the storytelling skills of George Miller makes us see Djinn's story through new eyes.

The casts' performances were great, especially Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton. Djinn portrayed himself as a powerful yet vulnerable being and Idris Elba delivered on this role perfectly. I could see the emotions and vulnerability in his eyes, the desire to be free yet pursuing love at the cost of his freedom.

The one part I was dissatisfied with is that their roles called for a major emotional pull which I feel they did not fully deliver. I wish they had been given more scenes to explore their relationship. Alas, the movie wrapped up too quickly.

Overall, this movie is charming and I'll give it a 4.5 stars out of 5. If you love fantasy and storytelling, this movie is for you.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Other images are screenshots from the movie



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16 comments
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Bang, I did it again... I just rehived your post!
Week 123 of my contest just started...you can now check the winners of the previous week!
!BEER
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I don't remember where but I saw the trailer and I was attracted to this movie because of these two actors, I have seen them in several movies and I liked their performances very much, and now after reading your review I want to see this movie.

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Yes, yes! Do watch this movie, you'll love it. Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton are fantastic, popular actors and I enjoy their movies. The collaboration of these two made this movie a superb one, in my opinion. 🙂
!LADY

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(Edited)

Of course I love fantasy and storytelling so this story is for me. Lol. I really enjoyed Aladdin when I watched it, the dance, soundtrack and colorful costumes was a wow, so I I'd definitely love this one too. I love Idris Elba, he's got this nice sense of humor. Thanks for giving me something to watch during this annoying stay at home.

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I love Idris Elba too! 😍 Aladdin is a lovely story but this movie tells the story in a totally different but enchanting way.

Let me know your thoughts on the movie after watching! 😄 !LADY

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but this movie tells the story in a totally different but enchanting way.

A lovely remark indeed😌

Let me know your thoughts on the movie after watching!

You bet😁

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Sounds like a fun addition to the wish-granting fantasy genre. I am also a fan of Idris Elba’s work. He was great in “The Wire” and “Luther.” Tulsa Swinton is another great actress. She’s been in a lot of great stuff. One of her most haunting roles was in “We Need to Talk About Kevin.” I haven’t seen “Three Thousand Years of Longing” but I can already guess Idris Elba’s genie is probably much better than Will Smith’s in the recent “Aladdin” remake. Great review!

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...but I can already guess Idris Elba’s genie is probably much better than Will Smith’s in the recent “Aladdin” remake.

Well, I'll say both actors performed excellently in their movies but their acts are like two sides of a coin. Will Smith in Aladdin was lively, high-spirited and happy to be a genie. In Idris' case, he was trapped in a jar and the only way to gain his freedom was to grant 3 wishes to another. So he had to convince the beneficiaries to make the wishes.

Thanks for your visit. 🙂 !PIZZA

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I love Aladdin, Although I love the cartoon best, dunno if that's weird😂. Disney did a great Job with their soundtracks

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I love the cartoon too but this movie is kind of a rehash and the storyline is totally different. I hope you watch it. 🙂

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