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Wendy Moon

Perfume

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I didn't even know they were making a film of this, one of my favourite books - and now I hear it opens in January. Does anyone know anything about it? I'm going to have to see it, but I'm already gearing myself up for a great big disappointment. Just checked out the trailer on the IMDB and it looks great, although if you've not read the book it kinda gives the ending away. http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0396171/trailers-screenplay-E29702-10-2

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To be totally honest, I didn't think much of the book. In fairness the story line was alright.. but the actual writing style was nothing special - presumably because of the translation. None-the-less, I'll probably go and see the film through curiousity.

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I loved the book... then again, you may have had a poor translation - there are two translastiors of Haruki Murakami's writing, and the difference between the two is quite disconcerting...

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i saw the trailer for this on monday and i thought it looked fucking gash. apart from the close up down the birds top, which was quite decent. but apart from that, some clown in the shadows sniffing some bird?!?! what the fuck?!

it'll be no jurassic park, that's for damn sure!

/x

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I didn't even know they were making a film of this, one of my favourite books - and now I hear it opens in January. Does anyone know anything about it? I'm going to have to see it, but I'm already gearing myself up for a great big disappointment. Just checked out the trailer on the IMDB and it looks great, although if you've not read the book it kinda gives the ending away. http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt0396171/trailers-screenplay-E29702-10-2

It's reviewed in this month's Empire by Dan Jolin

Plot

Born in 1744, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille (Whishaw) is a young man with a preternaturally acute sense of smell, who becomes obsessed with capturing scent after accidentally killing a girl with an irresistible aroma.

Empire Review

So many supposedly unfilmable novels have now been successfully realised that the word unfilmable has arguably been rendered redundant. Yet Bavarian writer Patrick Sskinds 1985 bestseller Perfume provided its own special challenge. Not least because the author refused to sell the rights for 15 years, adamant that his books main theme, smell, could not work in a visual medium. He had a point, but Run Lola Run helmer Tom Tykwer has proven Sskind wrong.

Dont worry, its not a Smell-O-Vision movie; theres no scratch n sniff card. If there was, Grenouilles (Ben Whishaw) harrowing birth in which hes spat out of his mothers womb and left to die, twitching, in a pile of rotting piscine entrails under the counter of her fish-market stall would be even more gut-churning than it already is. Its in his attention to detail that Tykwer handles cinemas inability to tweak the olfactory nerve. Almost everything sniffed in the film, from the nauseating to the delectable, is glimpsed in vivid close-up, cornering our imagination into summoning up the pong for itself.

A welcome byproduct of this approach is that Tykwer recreates Grenouilles dark, filthy and, yes, thoroughly stinky era with relish and precision, making sure we view the harsh world of Perfume from gutter-up. And this is how Grenouille sees it too, clawing his way up from fish-market floor to a job as a journeyman perfumier in a Provencal town.

Grenouille is a tricky character: spending much of the film serially bludgeoning young women to death, hes the villain of the piece, but also, given our insight into his childhood, a tragic figure. In the hands of 26 year-old English actor Ben Whishaw, hes a near-autistic bundle of constrained twitches, a man gifted with a superhuman talent but cursed by an inability to exploit it constructively.

Whishaw commands the screen, even opposite Dustin Hoffman, who plays his hapless mentor with near-OTT flourishes, and Alan Rickman (like Hoffman, presumably cast in a key role thanks as much to his aquiline profile as his acting nous), as the father of Grenouilles ideal victim (Rachel Hurd-Wood, aka Wendy in 2003s Peter Pan). The only thing he cant supersede is the films principal flaw: fidelity to the novel. Numerous episodes have been omitted, but still the 140-plus-minute run time is overly extravagant.

Grenouille is soulless just as he is scentless. Hes barely human, a shade almost, emotionless and cold. And despite Whishaws impressive efforts, a sense of why remains in the films bizarre, borderline-preposterous finale. Still, while that robs Perfume of true emotional resonance, it remains a thought-provoking triumph of style.

Verdict

The odd conclusion renders it somewhat oblique, but Perfume is a feast for the senses. Smell it with your eyes...

Reviewer: Dan Jolin

Four Star Rating

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Guest bluesxman
I loved the book... then again, you may have had a poor translation - there are two translastiors of Haruki Murakami's writing, and the difference between the two is quite disconcerting...

Can you elaborate on which is good/bad? It's a book I keep meaning to read and don't want to end up with the crappy version....

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If there was, Grenouilles (Ben Whishaw) harrowing birth in which hes spat out of his mothers womb and left to die, twitching, in a pile of rotting piscine entrails under the counter of her fish-market stall

Fucks sake!

Haud me back!

I wonder how the fat, let's-go-to-the-cinema-to-eat, Aberdeen audience will react to that. Might put them off their 5-kilo bags of Revels....for 10 minutes.

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Fucks sake!

Haud me back!

I wonder how the fat, let's-go-to-the-cinema-to-eat, Aberdeen audience will react to that. Might put them off their 5-kilo bags of Revels....for 10 minutes.

Revels...

:puke:

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