Starring: James McAvoy, Keira Knightley, Saoirse Ronan, Romola Garai, Vanessa Redgrave, Benedict Cumberbatch, Brenda Blethyn
Director: Joe Wright
Summary: A fledgling British writer irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister’s lover of a crime he did not commit
Other Nominations: Supporting Actress (Ronan), Adapted Screenplay, Original Score*, Art Direction, Cinematography, Costume Design
Atonement has some really amazing aspects to it-mainly the cinematography which is some of the best I’ve seen in a nominee in a while, and the score which while slightly repetitive was still outstanding and Oscar worthy. The cast as a whole is good, with all three versions of Briony Tallis (Ronan, Garai & Redgrave) giving strong performances, especially Ronan who was just 12 years old at the time but perfectly plays that distinctive kind of frustration that comes with the being at the cusp of puberty. As far as the screenplay, it’s interesting how they played with both time (periodically having a scene, then rewinding it a bit and showing the same time from a different character’s perspective), and with reality; in general, I thought the movie was strongest during the first section at the mansion, as after that it kind of loses some of its focus up until the last 20 minutes or so. Still, a solid movie that’s fantastic to look at with a great score and some good performances.