Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Atonement - the movie
posted before about how amazing the book was, I commented about how I didn't this it would translate well to film, but wow. And it's honestly not just because I love both actors, but the longer I watched, the more and more perfect James McAvoy and Kiera Knightly became for the roles of Robbie and Cecelia. Even the unknowns who played Briony as a 13 year old and a 17 year old were both perfect, and the longer I watched, the more perfect they became. The film was obviously missing a lot of the beautiful inner turmoil and misunderstanding, but the important parts of that were very well done with music and quick, fleeting shots to really convey the feeling. Robbie and Cecelia's love scene in the library was brilliantly done, as was Briony's discovery of them. The ending was slightly different than I remember, with Briony being interviewed about her final book for a television talk show (I remember the ending being her exiting the Imperial War Museum before attending a birthday party at her old home, etc.), but with the same ultimate conclusion regarding Cee and Robbie. The end of the film was as captivating as the end of the book, though, even as it was played out through Briony's discussion of it, rather than in her head. I missed some of the detail that was included in the second part of the book, between Briony's nurses' training and Robbie's war stories, but both were conveyed efficiently and accurately, despite the missing details, which were mostly internal. J hated the movie and quit on it after about 20 minutes. I think that if he had sat and watched the whole thing, he'd have gotten something out of it, but to each his own. I was impressed, at any rate, and I stand corrected about McEwan's work making for a good movie. The film was true to the book, was well-scripted, well-acted, well-directed, and overall just very well done. I enjoyed it immensely.