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Atonement (2007)

R  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Romance  |  11 January 2008 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 182,043 users   Metascore: 85/100
Reviews: 576 user | 315 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

Fledgling writer Briony Tallis, as a 13-year-old, irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister's lover of a crime he did not commit. Based on the British romance novel by Ian McEwan.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 46 wins & 134 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ailidh Mackay ...
Singing Housemaid
Julia West ...
Emily Tallis
Felix von Simson ...
Charlie von Simson ...
Danny Hardman
Leon Tallis
Leander Deeny ...
Police Constable


When Briony Tallis, 13 years old and an aspiring writer, sees her older sister Cecilia and Robbie Turner at the fountain in front of the family estate she misinterprets what is happening thus setting into motion a series of misunderstandings and a childish pique that will have lasting repercussions for all of them. Robbie is the son of a family servant toward whom the family has always been kind. They paid for his time at Cambridge and now he plans on going to medical school. After the fountain incident, Briony reads a letter intended for Cecilia and concludes that Robbie is a deviant. When her cousin Lola is raped, she tells the police that it was Robbie she saw committing the deed. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Torn apart by betrayal. Separated by war. Bound by love See more »


Drama | Mystery | Romance | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing war images, language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

11 January 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Expiación, deseo y pecado  »

Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,634,065 (UK) (7 September 2007)


$50,921,738 (USA) (4 April 2008)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The small English town of Redcar stood in for the French city of Dunkirk, and the Dunkirk set built there was the most expensive one in the film, costing an estimated 1 million pounds. See more »


As the three soldiers are walking back to the coast, three war planes are reflected in the stream next to them ("Some poor blighter's going to catch a packet!") From that camera angle, the originals should be visible in the sky. See more »


[first lines]
Briony Tallis, aged 13: I finished my play.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title types itself out like on a typewriter. See more »


Featured in Starz Inside: Fashion in Film (2008) See more »


Dear Lord and Father of Mankind
Written by Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry (as Charles Parry), John Greenleaf Whittier (as John Whittier)
Performed by Bede College Choir
Courtesy of Universal Studios
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

my review
24 August 2007 | by (London) – See all my reviews

Well, from the trailers I could tell this would be an epic film before I was even able to see it. I managed to attend a gala screening of the film last night and I thought it was amazing. Despite my constant dislike to Keira Knightly, I was unable to disapprove of her acting in this film. She has improved massively since the first pirates film. The film itself has an intriguing plot line which keeps you hooked throughout. The film includes humour at the start and fascination by the end. I loved watching this film and I enjoyed the smartness of the story. The film is cleverly done with jumps in time and different perspectives of events throughout which will leave you understanding the motives of each character more. The music is composed beautifully, the orchestral tunes accompanied with the clatter that a typewriter makes creates a beautiful piece of music that fits perfectly with the film itself. I have since begun to read the book, the only thing that the film lacks is the character depth that a book can write about but a film simply can't explain. I feel that the film shows what happened but the book is able to explain a little more as to why the events occurred. Overall the film was beautiful, brilliant and emotional.

158 of 255 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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