Monday, September 20, 2010

Perfume (2006)

With Perfume being the most expensive movie to ever come out of Europe, you'd think more people would've heard about it. As it features more than a couple of naked female breasts, and an ending that... well, you're gonna have to see it for yourself, but lets just say it doesn't exactly follow conventional Hollywood story lines, it was shunned in America, and actually angered a lot of people who thought they were going to see a Harry Potter-like film.

Little did these people know that the film is brilliantly adapted from the equally amazing book. The only thing really changed is toning down the main character's hideous appearance (in the book he is described as so ugly, people don't want to look at him.)

And since what made the book so fantastic is that it's basically all about odor, there was much speculation about how on earth they would transfer scent to the screen. There had been several attempts of filming the novel before, all which had been abandoned, when various film makers gave up. The final solution used by German director Tom Tykwer (of Run Lola Run fame) is so simple, it's nothing but brilliant: He uses sound and color to visualize smell.

The music alone is beautiful enough to make any person dream, so you might as well get the soundtrack right away. The sets are what probably ate most of the 65 million dollar budget, and I can pretty much guarantee you at least one or two jaw-dropping moments, when you see the Lord of the Rings-like scale of this film.

I don't know how much Dustin Hoffman was paid for acting his role, but the fact that his name was used very little, if nothing at all, to promote the film, is sad testament to how the once great actor has plummeted in status, after starring in torture films like Meet the Fockers

But all that's all trivia.

What really matters is that this is an amazing fantasy film, and the fact that it does not come from Hollywood ensures that it is both intelligent, interesting and intensely invigorating, all the way 'till the end.



  1. This is one of my favorite films of all time. Ranking just above Sleuth (1972 the remake was terrible.) I just managed to get it on DVD recently. Well worth adding to my collection

  2. If so, then you really should give the book a go. It's equally wonderful.

    Hehe, the remake of Sleuth did make some very strange alterations...

  3. Oh yes. I know plays are known for subtext but having read it the gay card was not necessary.

    I've been meaning to get my hands on a copy. Can't wait to read it. I'm catching up on the Millennium trilogy currently.