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Perfume (2006)

HD   R Closed Captioning

Tom Tykwer

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About the Movie

An obsessive French perfumer with a highly developed olfactory sense and an all-consuming drive to capture the essence of love eventually resorts to murder in his unrepentant quest to find the key ingredient for his recipe in director Tom Tykwer's adaptation of author Patrick Suskind's best-selling 1985 novel. Born in a fetid fish market and raised in a dilapidated orphanage, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille (Ben Whishaw) toiled his childhood away in a rank tannery run by the thuggish Grimal (Sam Douglas). Subsequently obsessed by smell, Grenouille's keen olfactory sense becomes so finely tuned that it eventually overpowers such human qualities as love and compassion. Though he has indeed discovered the unmistakable scent of a woman, Grenouille finds it impossible to connect with the fairer sex on any sort of meaningful level. Roaming the streets of Paris late one night, Grenouille catches the scent of a young girl selling plums and impulsively strangles her, later sniffing her nude corpse in a twisted attempt to preserve the distinctive scent in his memory. After persuading legendary perfumer Giuseppe Baldini (Dustin Hoffman) to take him on as an apprentice, Grenouille travels to the town of Grasse in Southern France in order to learn the art of enfleurage at a firm run by the highly respected Mme. Arnulfi (Corinna Harfouch). It is there that Grenouille becomes dangerously drawn to the vestal aroma of the young and beautiful Laura (Rachel Hurd-Wood), the daughter of widower merchant Antione Richis (Alan Rickman). Soon driven to madness by such a pure scent, the spellbound Grenouille continues to claim the lives of the numerous young girls in a tragic attempt to bottle the impossibly elusive smell of virginal womanhood.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 123
  • Fresh: 71
  • Rotten: 52
  • Average Rating: 6.2/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: The movie is lost. Whishaw succeeds in making the repulsive protagonist thoroughly repulsive, which is probably a testimony to his acting ability. But it doesn't make it anything worth watching. – Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle, Jan 6, 2007

Rotten: The director stays true to the source novel even when it lifts into a magical realism that works only on the page, and his faithfulness betrays him. Perfume is a thriller that Hobbes might have envied. – Ty Burr, Boston Globe, Nov 24, 2011

Fresh: Lush visuals and lusty, rhapsodic language bring Perfume as close as cinematically possible to capturing an elusive sense. – Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Perfume reminds us that the line between masterwork and folly can be awfully thin. But the movie contains so many beautiful and unsettling moments that it earns a right to be seen, if not fully embraced. – Robert Denerstein, Denver Rocky Mountain News, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews


This movie is fantastic. I wish it were available to buy as well as rent. Beautifully filmed, great story, acting and narration. It feels like a fable or fairy tale.


Hate the fact that i can't purchase.

Need a purchase option!

This is a great movie! I'm happy that it was finally added to iTunes however why is there only an option to rent? I would purchase in a heartbeat if it were available.

Perfume (2006)
View in iTunes
  • $14.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 2007

Customer Ratings