In 1860s Massachusetts, the March family has four daughters, all with different artistic aspirations. Meg (Emma Watson) is an actress who is happy complying to society’s ideals of feminity, Jo (Saoirse Ronan) is an aspiring writer with intentions to make it on her own, cherubic Beth (Eliza Scanlen) is a musician, favouring the piano, and Amy (Florence Pugh) a painter who sometimes feels put out as the youngest child (although it was only in researching for this post that I discovered she was supposed to be the youngest, as it felt like Beth far more filled out that role). Their mother Marmee (Laura Dern) tries to mould them into good, charitable adults whilst their father is fighting in the American Civil War, and over the seven year period of the film, they all have varying dalliances with their wealthy neighbour’s grandson Laurie (Timothee Chalamet).Continue reading
Susie Salmon (Saoirse Ronan) is an ordinary 14-year old girl. She has a younger sister Lindsey (Rose McIver), an even younger brother Buckley (Christian Ashdale), a perfectionist father obsessed with building model ships in bottles (Mark Wahlberg), a stressed out mother (Rachel Weiz) who knits terrible headwear, an alcoholic grandmother (Susan Sarandon) and is developing her first crush on fellow schoolmate Ray Singh (Reece Ritchie). One day, however, Susia doesn’t make it all the way home from school. Whilst crossing a field near her family home she is lured into an underground bunker by her creepy neighbour George Harvey (Stanley Tucci), Harvey kills Susie, and the ramifications of this will throw her family into turmoil.
Based on the book of the same name that swept the country a few years ago, Atonement tells the story of Briony in three stages of her life, as a young writer in her parents stately manor in the early 30s (Saoirse Ronan), training to become a nurse during World War 2 (Romola Garai) and much later, releasing a book on the subject as an old woman (Vanessa Redgrave), cut the story she tells is not only her own, but that of Cecilia and Robbie (Keira Knightley and James McAvoy), her older sister and their gardener.