REVIEW / FILM REVIEW – Seven years after “Mad Max: Fury Road”, George Miller is finally back with “Three thousand years waiting for you”. A feature film less enraged than its predecessor, but just as ambitious and through which the filmmaker once again deploys his talents as a storyteller.
Three thousand years waiting for you : the death of mythology?
George Miller never ceases to question the power of myths. In Happy Feet, a penguin overcomes his condition and realizes his unique potential during an epic odyssey. In Mad Max: Fury Roaddying warriors continue to advance in a burning post-apocalyptic world and sacrifice themselves in the name of the V8 engine.
With Three thousand years waiting for youthe filmmaker once again looks at the need to attach to symbols in order to survive. He goes back to the sources of the stories, taking up in particular elements of the sacred texts. Alithea, narratologist embodied by Tilda Swinton, assures in the first part of the film that science will become in the future the reference point that myths represent today. An observation that suggests that fables and tales are doomed to disappear?
The affirmation of this solitary character immersed in his works and disappointed in love, having neither family nor real friends, is contradicted when a jinn interpreted by Idris Elba comes out of a bottle bought in an Istanbul market. This mysterious being then offers to grant him three of his wishes. An offer that logically raises concerns, since morality often dictates that abandonment to the dearest desires has harmful consequences.
George Miller did it again
To convince her of his good intentions, the jinn will tell her what has happened to him over the past 3000 years. Surprisingly aesthetic flashbacks begin, getting closer to ancient Egyptian paintings or the world of Tarsem Singh (The Fall, The Cell) than previous works by its author. A bias that makes Three thousand years waiting for you surprised so much after Mad Max: Fury Road that The Witches of Eastwick didn’t do it after Mad Max: Beyond Thunder Dome.
If the teaser announced a frantic editing, it is not so. Much more sedate in its rhythm than Max Rockatansky’s last trip, the feature film on the other hand, is teeming with visual madness. A staging that some will call kitsch but that the director fully assumes, partly through several touches of humor but also from Alithea, who declares to be the victim of “gross” hallucinations.
Those who manage to let themselves be carried away by the fables of the djinn will probably be overwhelmed by the complexity of his relationships, by his infinite wandering and by his kindness.
A belief above all
As soon as Alithea makes the choice to believe or not to believe in the genius’s good intentions, the film takes an unexpected turn, mixing hope with heartbreaking feelings. A hope that arises from the unshakable belief in a better future, the ultimate bulwark against abandonment.
If the spectator had already become attached to the jinn by discovering his past, his evolution in the last thirty minutes proves to be even more poignant. As for the heroine, her decisions finally allow her to live stories that she was content to study, and her loneliness no longer has the same meaning when the end credits appear.
Stories exist above all to allow us to improve ourselves. The message is basic, obvious, but has rarely been affirmed with such fervor and ambition in cinema in recent years. A work of hope that reminds us that a simple statement like “love will win” can be expressed in a thousand and one ways, Three thousand waiting for you reaches brilliantly reconcile appeasement in substance and madness in form. A strange, daring and sometimes destabilizing feature film, which makes it fascinating.
3000 years waiting for you by George Miller, in theaters on August 24, 2022. Above the trailer. Find all our trailers here.