Edit
Atonement (2007) Poster

(2007)

Goofs

Anachronisms 

In the section of the movie set in 1935, there is a scene where Robbie is daydreaming and the image of a four engined bomber crosses the screen. The plane is in fact an Avro Lancaster, which entered service in 1942.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Robbie is writing the letter to Cecilia, we see a record being put on a phonograph. The recording is from what some consider the greatest operatic recording ever of opera La Bohème by Giacomo Puccini, directed in 1956 by Sir Thomas Beecham and featuring Jussi Björling and Victoria de los Ángeles.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Robbie and his two comrades pass through a bombed-out factory complex on their way to Dunkirk, they stumble along a Railway track where the rails are fastened Down with 'Pandrol' clips invented in 1957.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Robbie is standing behind the movie screen at Dunkirk, the men in the audience hum/sing "White Cliffs of Dover." The song was written in 1941, and Dunkirk Evacuation was in 1940. The song became most famous when Vera Lynn recorded it in 1942.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Continuity 

During the library scene, Cecilia slips her shoe off while making love. When Briony interrupts, both of Cecilia's shoes are still on.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Cecilia and Robbie are in the restaurant drinking tea, Robbie has a full cup. Then the camera moves. When the camera goes back to him and he starts to drink the tea, there is no tea in the cup at all.
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
In the lake scene at the manor house, Cecilia is lying on her back on the springboard with her left leg over her right in the first shot. When the shot changes to a closer one with her feet towards the camera, she has her right leg over her left.
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The birthmark under Briony's right eye is too close the the nose on the portrayal of Briony at 18 years old, compared to the other two ages. It also looks way too raised compared to that of her at 13 and 77 (which could understandably fade in later life).
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
During the dinner party scene, Cecilia's fingernails go from being painted to unpainted, with no break in the action allowing her time to have removed the nail polish.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Robbie gives Briony the letter for her sister, she arrives at the fence with the hem of her collar down. In the next shot, her collar is up. In the next shot, it's down again.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
In the scene when Robbie types the letter, he starts it with "In my dreams" and then presses return and starts a NEW line with "I kiss your c**t..." But later when Briony opens the letter after the rape has occurred, the first line in the letter is "In my dreams I". The second line then starts "kiss your c**t, your sweet wet c**t."
0 of 4 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
In the scene where Robbie types his "In my dreams" letter, he finishes the letter placing the period only a little ways from the edge of the paper. But when he removes the letter from the typewriter and goes to fold it, the words and period are closer to the center of the paper.
0 of 4 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Crew or equipment visible 

In the scene where the older Briony visits Cecilia, the actor's marks, which are bright orange strips of tape, are clearly visible on the floor next to Cecilia's feet.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
In the scene in London streets, when Robbie and Cecilia are walking, the lens of the steady cam can be seen clearly reflected in the window of a parked car.
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Briony walks in on Cecelia and Robbie in the library from Briony's perspective, there is a shadow of a boom visible off in the distance behind her before she enters the room.
1 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When Briony drops her flashlight and runs to Lola's side in the woods there is a second flashlight shining on the two, even though no one else is there.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Factual errors 

On arriving on the beach at Dunkirk, Robbie is told of the sinking of the Lancastria and the loss of 3000 men. This event actually occurred 17 days later on June 17 1940.
4 of 4 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
As the film opens, "England 1935" is displayed. When Robbie is in France, "Four years later" is displayed, which would mean 1939. But the retreat to Dunkirk, during which the scene took place, was in the second half of May 1940, which would be nearly 5 years later.
3 of 3 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The last day of Dunkirk evacuation was the 4th of June, not the 1st. The Navy officer tells Robbie that there were 300,000 men waiting on the beach, but the 1st of June, there were about 118,000 soldiers waiting.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
While in London, Cecilia drops a letter in the mailbox addressed to PTE Turner, 'A' Company, 1st Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment, B.E.F. France. According to at least one source, 1st Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment was never in France. They were in Egypt and thus, would not have taken part in the Dunkirk Evacuation. 2nd Battalion was at Dunkirk, not 1st Battalion.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Incorrectly regarded as goofs 

Any apparent continuity errors in the fountain scene - the position of the vase, the tennis shoes, Robbie's sitting position, Cecilia's strap slip, the buttons on her blouse etc. - are not what they seem: we are seeing the same event in different ways through different pairs of eyes.
8 of 8 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Newsreel footage from the War mentions Queen Elizabeth. Some have incorrectly assumed that it refers to Queen Elizabeth II, who was crowned in 1952. However, the film shows the future Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, wife of King George VI, who was called Queen Elizabeth at the time.
3 of 3 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
In the British Army, brassards (armband) are used on uniforms to denote temporary rank or insignia. They are always worn on the right arm for uniformity. In the movie, Robbie's brassard is on his left arm whilst his colleague's is on his right. There is no insignia shown on either brassard.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Revealing mistakes 

In the Dunkirk beach scene, after Robbie and Tommy walk around the stern of the boat, one of the horses that had just been shot can be seen trying to get up again.
2 of 2 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
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.
0 of 1 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Spoilers 

The goof items below may give away important plot points.

Character error 

The date of the Balham tube station bombing and flood is incorrectly stated by elderly Briony as being "the 15th of October, 1940." The date of the actual event was October 14th, 1940.
3 of 3 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

Errors in geography 

When Celia is killed by the flood in "Balham" tube station the sign behind her says ALD, indicating that the station is at Aldywch.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

See also

Trivia | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

Contribute to This Page