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With Mad Max: Fury Road in 2015, George Miller re-asserted himself as one of our greatest living genre directors, a visual dynamo able to fill his action sequences with character and meaning. It's been seven years since Fury Road roared into theaters, and though many fans have been focused on the development of its in-universe follow-up, the prequel movie Furiosa, Miller's also been hard at work on another project.
Based on a story by A.S. Byatt, Three Thousand Years of Longing marks Miller's return to fantasy filmmaking after first delving into the genre with The Witches of Eastwick 35 years ago. The film tells the story of a solitary scholar named Alithea (Tilda Swinton), who arrives in Istanbul for a conference and finds herself in the presence of a millennia-old Djinn (Idris Elba). The Djinn offers her three wishes, after which he will be granted his freedom, but of course, Alithea is an academic, and she doesn't necessarily believe the Djinn's gifts — leaving him to regale her with stories of his long life in an effort to convince her.
A brief teaser released Wednesday revealed glimpses of Miller's all-out visual style at work in the film, and now the full trailer has landed to give us an even bigger taste of what's in store.
Check it out below:
Right away, the sense of visual ambition is on full display as Miller plays up the contrast between Alithea's tightly controlled world and the vividly colored, kinetic past set up by the Djinn. There's also a remarkable playfulness at work in the footage, suggesting something a good deal more comedic than Fury Road (which had its laughs, to be sure), and a film more willing to delve into interesting tangents and explorations.
Then, of course, there's the heart of the piece, which hints at a film that's as much about storytelling as it is about a single story. Alithea and the Djinn are navigating not just their relationship to each other, but how a single wish could change the course of both of their narratives. It's a fascinating way to approach the film, and it looks certain to be one of 2022's must-see genre efforts.
Three Thousand Years of Longing celebrated its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival today, and will arrive in theaters August 31.
Looking for more fantasy action? Check out the best fantasy movies on Peacock right now.