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THE STORY OF A MURDERER
USA: DreamWorks SKG
UK: Pathe Distribution
Cast: Ben Whishaw, Alan Rickman, Rachel Hurd-Wood, Dustin Hoffman, Karoline Herfurth, David Calder, Simon Chandler, Jessica Schwarz, Sian Thomas, Corinna Harfouch, Paul Berrondo, Timothy Davies, Sam Douglas, Harris Gordon, Sara Forestier, Joanna Griffiths, Birgit Minichmayr, Alvaro Roque, Franck Lefeuvre, Michael Smiley, Richard Felix, John Hurt (narrator)
Director: Tom Tykwer
Countries: Germany / France / Spain
USA & UK: 147 mins
USA Rated: R for aberrant behavior involving nudity, violence, sexuality, and disturbing images
UK Certificate: 15 contains sexualised nudity and disturbing images
USA Release Date: 5 January 2007 (Limited Release - wider)
USA Release Date: 27 December 2006 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 26 December 2006
1766. The city of Grasse, South of France.
A crowd has gathered in the town square to witness the sentencing of the perfume maker, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille (Ben Whishaw). The mob erupts when he is dragged, in shackles, to the citadel balcony, roaring in approval when the death sentence is announced.
22 years earlier. Paris.
Grenouille's mother (Birgit Minichmayr) gives birth to him in the stench of the Paris fish market on the hottest day of the year. She tries to hide the unwanted child among the fish entrails but he is saved by a passer-by. The mother is carted off by the authorities and hanged for the attempted murder of her child.
Grenouille spends the first years of his life in the orphanage of Madame Gaillard (Sian Thomas). The other children know that there is something strange about the infant and try to smother him on the eve of his arrival. But Mme. Gaillard will not be denied the subsidy she receives by housing the orphan, and saves him. By the age of six, he realises he has a very refined sense of smell. But when 13, Madame Gaillard sells Grenouille to Grimal (Sam Douglas), who owns a tannery.
After surviving the murderous working conditions of the tannery in his youth, Grenouille starts an apprenticeship at the perfumery of Baldini (Dustin Hoffman). He soon surpasses his master at the art of mixing scents, but they also become his obsession, an obsession that drives him away from human company.
Possessed by the idea of preserving human aromas, he unscrupulously murders young women whose scent turns his head. The drama takes its course when Grenouille meets the beautiful Laura (Rachel Hurd-Wood), who for him has a supernatural kind of scent, on the way to the perfume metropolis, Grasse. While further unexplained murders occur, Laura's father, the merchant Richis (Alan Rickman), suspects that his daughter's life is also in great danger. A real cat-and-mouse game of close fatherly love and deadly passion begins...
From the director of RUN LOLA RUN, PERFUME: THE STORY OF A MURDERER, is based on the bestselling novel 'Das Parfum' by Patrick Suskind.