'Three Thousand Years Of Longing' Ending Explained

'Three Thousand Years Of Longing' Ending Explained

George Miller’s art house film starring Tilda Swinton and Idris Elba made just $2.9 million against a $60 million production budget

Directed by Mad Max: Fury Road filmmaker George Miller, who co-wrote the screenplay with Augusta Gore, Three Thousand Years of Longing brings together two of Hollywood’s most renowned actors: Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton. The movie contains a mix of fantasy and romance by the enthusiastic pair for the audience to cherish.

Three Thousand Years of Longing has the right ingredients to make a high-concept idea work, especially with two likable actors leading the charge. Tilda Swinton stars as Alithea Binnie who released a djinn from a god's bottle which she got from a gift shop in Istanbul. The djinn like Idris Elba played his role very reliably, offering three wishes to her in exchange for his freedom but Alithea thinks he’s playing a trick on her.


She talks to the djinn and tells him some information about her life. Like she created an imaginary friend, named Enzo who she used to fantasize about romance with. She also tells the djinn about her marriage and miscarriage and how her marriage ended sadly. The Djinn then proceeds to tell Alithea about how he came to be imprisoned. Thousands of years earlier, the Djinn fell in love with Queen Sheba (Aamito Lagum), but King Solomon (Nicholas Mouawad) was fond of her as well. He traveled far and won her over by playing the harp for her. While Solomon was taking Sheba to bed, he sensed the Djinn’s presence and imprisoned him in a brass bottle, which he threw into the ocean, leaving him there for over 2000 years. He keeps telling Alithea more about his experiences and how he remained trapped in the brass bottle and none was able to demand three complete wishes.

After Djinn finishes his stories, Alithea makes her first wish for them to fall in love. Alithea brings the Djinn to London along with her. After some time the djinn became weak as his body was bombarded by the cell towers and satellite transmissions in London affecting the material his body is made up of. Alithea tries to help and uses her second and third wishes to get the Djinn to speak again and for him to be healed, meaning he will be free and returned to his own world. Despite her wish, Alithea couldn’t stand to see him in pain. She also realized it was selfish of her to ask him to remain because of a wish. That wasn’t what love was, and so she wished he would return to wherever he belonged.


But the Djinn continued to meet her sometimes even after the wishes were fulfilled of his own will. After three years, Alithea wrote a book, there she saw Djinn and was amazed to see him fully energetic and healed. She narrated that djinn continued to visit her every now and then. And proved how much they loved each other. The Djinn leaving London though set him free but it deepened the connection between him and Alithea.

Earlier Alithea told The Djinn about her imaginary friend, Enzo. So she thought that Djinn is also one of her imaginations. But if this was true then how could her neighbors sense him too? And he had to wear a hood to cover his pointy ears. So it made her believe that Djinn was in reality with her to accompany her. And he fulfilled her desire for companionship during a time she needed it.


Alithea used to understand emotions through various storytelling, movies, books, and television shows which  can create empathy. These kinds of things expand the power of imagination and create connections across borders and languages. Basically, storytelling drives people's emotions like anger, fear, grief, empathy, hope, happiness, and even love. So, Three Thousand Years of Longing is ultimately about the power of storytelling. As Alithea showed her emotion of love through her imagination

Recommended for you