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How Atonement took me by storm.

June 15, 2012

An unbearably realistic tale about a girl, who is too little to understand and yet old enough to ruin everything.

The common stare of Briony Tallis, always sceptical and judging

Aspiring writer, Briony Tallis is only 13 years old, and she witnesses several events which she does not understand well enough to piece together, and she irrevocably changes the fates of several lives, including that of Robbie Turner, a young man who is the lover of Briony’s older sister, Cecilia. But what is only the passion of two lovers is seen by the little girl as a crime, and she is frightened and disgusted by the apparently sexually delusional Robbie. At the same time, two boys are gone missing, and their sister is raped by an unknown man. Briony is convinced that it is Robbie.

Movie poster

This leads to later events that will turn everything up and down, and throughout the film we watch as Robbie lives out his punishment, while Cecilia patiently awaits his return. Through letters, the two lovers keep contact, and their fates are in the hands of time.

Briony, however, grows older, and the knowledge she has of the horrible accusations she made, haunts her like a mare.

Romolo Garai plays the 18 year old Briony, realising what she has done

Containing several layers, sub-plots and flashbacks, the movie is diverse and ever surprising. No wonder it is marked as “Drama”.

A thrilling, nerve-wrecking, heart-breaking and moving film about how just one person can change the fates of many and how true love will wait forever.

Keira Knightley does a great job as always, and Saoirse Ronan does an amazing job portraying the almost innocent judgement of the 13 year old Briony. She is later known for great performances in both The Lovely Bones (2009) and Hanna (2011).

As one of her breakthrough performances, I must say, that she does a wonderful job at playing the naïve mind of a 13 year old girl who sees more than she can comprehend.

Warning: Bear in mind that the film is very dramatic and a little unpleasant at times, so I do not suggest showing it to a younger audience. This is a movie for grown-ups. It is rated R (17+), mostly for its darker themes like war and serious crime.

The beginning of one of the most crucial scenes in the movie

I don’t know what it is about movies with Keira Knightley on the list, but they always seem to surprise me in a positive way. I thought to myself, minutes before it ended, that it was kind of funny that I didn’t cry, because I almost always do so if it’s the slightest bit touching. And guess, what happened 30 seconds later? Boo-hoo.

Definitely one of my new all-time favorites, I seem to stumble across tons of great movies these days, old as new!

Have any movie suggestions?

 

(Sorry for the delay in posts, by the way)

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From → Movie, Uncategorized

4 Comments
  1. lucywilliamspoetry permalink

    I loved this film and even more so the book, it was heart breaking!

    • Me too, I cried in the end when I realized the whole ending was a lie and that she was still so torn by it that she wrote another ending than the real one! I really want to read the book sometime soon, is it long?

      • lucywilliamspoetry permalink

        Me to!!! so sad!!! No it’s not very long and it’s not all fancy, hard to read English either

      • Wow, I am definitely going to read it then, because I am looking for something new to get my hands on!

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