Explanation of the ending of the atonement: when reality ends

The best movies they have the ability to haunt you long after the credits roll. Usually, it’s the brilliant or shocking endings who strike the final match to etch these films permanently into your memory. It’s the final triumphs or the gut punches that make movies and their endings unforgettable. The Atonement the finale delivers both a triumph and a gut punch.

For all Atonement, we look at two narratives. One that is nebulous about the facts and another that is told matter-of-factly. It is only in the last moments that we realize that we have always watched the film from one perspective. Briony is the narrator and we are stuck in her reality. This makes the Atonement more complicated and deceptive ending. Let’s discuss what happened.

Warning: Atonement spoilers ahead. Proceed with caution.

Vanessa Redgrave in Atonement

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

What happened at the end of the atonement

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