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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006)

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Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, born with a superior olfactory sense, creates the world's finest perfume. His work, however, takes a dark turn as he searches for the ultimate scent.

Director:

Tom Tykwer

Writers:

Andrew Birkin (screenplay), Bernd Eichinger (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
1,472 ( 470)
15 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Whishaw ... Jean-Baptiste Grenouille
Francesc Albiol Francesc Albiol ... Court Official
Gonzalo Cunill Gonzalo Cunill ... Guard 1 Dungeon
Roger Salvany Roger Salvany ... Guard 2 Dungeon
Andrés Herrera ... Door Guard
Simon Chandler ... Mayor of Grasse
David Calder ... Bishop of Grasse
Richard Felix ... Chief Magistrate
Birgit Minichmayr ... Grenouille's Mother
Reg Wilson ... Customer Fishmarket
Catherine Boisgontier Catherine Boisgontier ... Woman Fishmarket
Núria Casas ... Woman 2 Fishmarket
Carlos Gramaje Carlos Gramaje ... Police Lieutenant Fishmarket
Sian Thomas ... Madame Gaillard
Michael Smiley ... Porter
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Storyline

Jean-Baptiste Grenouille came into the world unwanted, expected to die, yet born with an unnerving sense of smell that created alienation as well as talent. Of all the smells around him, Grenouille is beckoned to the scent of a woman's soul, and spends the rest of his life attempting to smell her essence again by becoming a perfumer, and creating the essence of an innocence lost.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He lived to find beauty. He killed to possess it. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for aberrant behavior involving nudity, violence, sexuality, and disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | France | Spain | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 January 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El perfume See more »

Filming Locations:

Barcelona, Catalonia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$55,527, 31 December 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,223,293

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$135,039,943
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the official website, the film featured sixty-seven speaking roles, five thousand two hundred extras, and one hundred two sets. Behind the scenes, five hundred twenty technicians were employed. See more »

Goofs

The method of enfleurage that Grenouille is first seen practicing is called cold enfleurage - placing live botanicals in a layer of lard or tallow set in a frame. However, this method of enfleurage was not developed until the 1800's. The movie is set in the mid 1700's. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Court Official: Quick. We can't hold them back much longer. Hurry. Come on!
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Connections

Referenced in Cine Terapia: Cine Terapia - Juan Carlos Maneglia (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Tarentelle
(Traditional)
Performed by Saboï and its Members
Asta Coulomb, Christian Coulomb, Sebastien Coulomb, François Hecquet, Bertrand Mercier, Nicolas Pillard,
Edo Pols, Jocelyn Raulet, Simon Staelens, Remi Tran-No
By arrangement: Christian Coulomb
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User Reviews

 
The critics are wrong - Brilliant!
13 September 2006 | by NauryaSee all my reviews

With "The Perfume" it's like with any blockbuster movie: if the critics praise it, it's horrible - if the critics hate it, it's brilliant.

I had the chance to watch a preview of "The Perfume" tonight and I was very surprised: this movie is really good! Okay, it can't actually make you smell all the scents and odours, but the images and the music allow you to experience the atmosphere and the emotions Grenouille is feeling when he takes in the scents of his environment. You couldn't have done this much better without the use of real scents at theatres.

Although much of the story is told by a narrative voice (mostly quotes from the novel), the movie is still thrilling and exciting all the way. It's a very good adaption of Süskind's novel, sticking to the original plot concerning the major events, leaving away unnecessary subplots (although it's a pity that funny "lethal gas"-plot was cut out!) and shortening long passages. The result is well-constructed movie that is worth seeing.

The actors, especially Whishaw who plays Grenouille, have done a very good job. Like in the novel, Grenouille is an ambivalent character and you never know whether to love him for his genius talent or to hate him for his cruel murders. Whishaw's half-crazy, scary gaze made me shiver. Dustin Hoffman as old and unsuccessful parfumeur Baldini was very convincing... I loved the way he talks to Grenouille arrogantly although he recognizes how much more talent the young man has. Baldini is always good for a laugh.

The only thing to criticize is that the movie is not as brutal as the novel. I think they wanted to avoid the FSK 16 rating and so didn't show much violence, which in my opinion would have been necessary if you wanted the movie to have the same shocking impact on the audience as the novel. For example I was really shocked by the end of the novel - in the movie you hardly see what happens.

However, it's really a thrilling story visualized excellently - go to the movies and watch "The Perfume"! You won't be disappointed.


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