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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006)

R | | Crime, Drama | 5 January 2007 (USA)
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Jean-Baptiste Grenouille (Ben Whishaw), 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
2,149 ( 67)
15 wins & 19 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 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 (Ben Whishaw) 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 of 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

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

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 January 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer See more »

Filming Locations:

Barcelona, Catalonia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$37,079, 31 December 2006

Gross USA:

$2,223,293

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$135,039,924
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

Most of the costumes were manufactured in Bucharest, Romania. See more »

Goofs

At one of the very first scenes of Jean-Baptiste execution, right before crowd starts fighting for the best place to see it, an antenna can be seen next to the balcony where the authorities and Laura's father are standing. It is easily identifiable as the peak of Calatrava Telecommunications Tower at Montuich mountain at Barcelona, which is quite near the building where the scene was shot. See more »

Quotes

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

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User Reviews

 
A sensual experience
14 September 2006 | by Spinelli_86See all my reviews

To my dismay this movie has been accused of dealing with the addressed subjects only on the surface and just trying to shock the audience with extreme imagery. I strongly have to disagree with that. "Das Parfum" may be a lot of things but shocking sure isn't one of them. Of course it is visually overwhelming and not only with pictures of pretty flowers and sounds of the wind softly shaking the trees on a warm summer night but what is this movie, if not a piece about the sensuality of the human being? Yes, it is about smells but smelling is just simply not one of the things you can experience while sitting in a movie theatre. This motion picture however comes very close to it. We see close-ups on maggots crawling around and fish getting their heads chopped of but also human bodies in all their perfection and people declaring their honest love for one another. It might be impossible to make the audience fully understand the world in which Jean-Baptiste Grenouille lives but it does manage to create a similar vibe that brings us close to what Grenouille "feels" when he smells. Tom Tykwer beautifully achieves to always put the audience in the right mood, with the help of an amazing soundtrack and great camera work.

One could criticize that Ben Wishaw is too good looking for the part but we have to keep in mind that this story is supposed to be about the character of Grenouille and the way he himself sees his live. Since to him, the smell is the soul of every being, his appearance does not matter to him. So we might as well thank Tom Tykwer for casting an actor who is pretty decent to look at for two and half hours.

Please watch this movie without any prejudices. Open your mind to images and sounds and try to imagine what your feeling could "smell" like. And even if that does not work you can still just enjoy a beautifully told story. Either way, you will be touched.


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