Terry Hunter reviews THREE THOUSAND YEARS OF LONGING
Updated: Sep. 4, 2022 at 4:42 PM HST
George Miller, the director who gave us the MAD MAX films, BABE, PIG IN THE CITY, and HAPPY FEET, has a new movie in theaters called THREE THOUSAND YEARS OF LONGING, a reimagining of the old story about a genie trapped in a lamp who gives three wishes to the person who releases him. The film is a fairly tale for adults, a very creative fantasy about the realistic emotions of the magical genie and the cautious woman who accidentally releases him. Two fine English actors, Tilda Swinton and Idris Elba, star in this visually stunning movie that will cast a spell over audiences who open themselves up to it. A THOUSAND YEARS OF LONGING has a lot to say about the mysteries of life. For example, the Djinn marvels at the innovations of 21st century technology and wonders why humans haven’t made similar progress in understanding themselves and each other.(Only in Theaters)
Sometimes films need to be nominated for an Academy Award before Hawaii theaters bring will them here. WOMEN TALKING and LIVING are two examples. Nominated for best picture, WOMEN TALKING is an intense drama about women in an isolated religious farm community who have been sexually abused by seven of the men who rule their colony. When the rapes are discovered and police arrest the abusers, the rest of the men go to town to bail them out. And 8 of the women meet in a hayloft to debate what action they should take: Do nothing, stay and fight, or leave. Directed by Sarah Polley, the film stars Claire Foy, Rooney Mara, and Jessie Buckley among others. In LIVING, Bill Nighy has earned a Best Actor nomination for his role as a repressed bureaucrat and widower living a dreary, repetitive life in 1950’s Britain. But that all changes when his doctor tells him he has only about six months to live. LIVING is a fine reimagining of Akira Kurosawa’s IKIRU.
Actor Jesse Eisenberg has acted in more than forty movies in the last twenty years. But now he’s written and directed a feature film for the very first time. It’s called WHEN YOU FINISH SAVING THE WORLD and it disappeared from local theaters after just one week. Unfortunately, it’s clearly the work of a well intentioned filmmaker who doesn’t know yet how to write a good script or direct an engaging film. But as an actor, I really admire Eisenberg’s talent. He’s currently playing one of four main characters in FLEISHMAN IS IN TROUBLE, a great 8 episode streaming series that originated on FX but is now streaming on Hulu. The show stars Eisenberg, Claire Danes, Lizzy Caplan and Adam Brody. FLEISHMAN IS IN TROUBLE is an astonishingly honest look at the struggles of middle age people who start questioning everything they’ve done in their lives. It’s the best streaming series I’ve seen in a year. (HULU)
Many of the most critically acclaimed movies in 2022 were box office failures and didn’t last more than a week or two in theaters. But most of these overlooked films are streaming now. One of those excellent films is EMILY THE CRIMINAL, starring Aubrey Plaza. Plaza is best known for her six years playing a comic character the TV series, PARKS AND RECREATION. But for the past seven years she’s shown she has serious acting chops. In EMILY THE CRIMINAL, she plays a tough but vulnerable young woman whose conviction on an assault charge keeps her from getting a decent paying job. Emily is saddled with 60,000 dollars of student and she’s desperate. She works at such a low paying food delivery job that she can barely cover the interest payments on her loans. But a friend shows her how she can get involved in a credit card buying scam and she enters the criminal world. The dark story develops in surprising ways and eventually comes to a shocking climax. EMILY THE CRIMINAL does not excuse criminality, but it does explain how society can inadvertently turn desperate people into criminals. (Netflix)