Atonement - the Falling Apart of Briony's World

Topics: English-language films, Rape, Control Pages: 2 (452 words) Published: May 17, 2011
In Part One of the film “Atonement” we see Briony’s world fall apart. From the beginning of the film 'Atonment' we observe as Briony displays her need for physical and emotional control of both herself and others. Her neatly ordered room with its overwhelming floral wallpaper and miniature replica of the house, along with the specifically aligned trail of animals reflects her ordered and controlling state of mind. Another aspect which reflects her nature is her meticulous and uptight walk as she strides through the wooden hallways to the servants quarters. At the beginning of 'Atonement' Briony is in complete control of every aspect of her life, and has manipulated her surroundings so as to control the actions of other people also. The way she speaks to Danny shows she is very much aware of the seperation between upper and lower classes; something which is obvious because of the wealth and privledge the decor of her home suggests. She gives him a dismissive look and mutters 'well I'm sorry, Danny...', displaying her belief of superiority which is also reflected in her desire for control. As Leon and his friend Paul Marshall arrive at the family home, the fabric of Briony's world begins to fray. Her play 'The Trials Of Arabella', written specifically for Leon's arrival, is abandoned, and her admiring view of Robbie shattered when she reads his letter for Ceclia. She continues, however, to cling to her need for control by sharing the language of the letter with Lola and describing Robbie as a 'sex maniac'. By far the most damaging aspect that shatters Briony's world is the 'frantic love-making' in the library between Robbie and Ceclia, which Briony witnesses. She has no comprehension of the meaning behind it - she does not understand what or why - and this further emphasises the devastion which has been wrecked on her perfect, ordered world. As Briony further witnesses the raping of Lola by the stream, her ordered world is even further destroyed. She scrabbles to...
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