Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Director: Tom Tykwer
Year Released: 2006
Rating: 3.5

A deranged obsessive with a gifted sniffer (Ben Whishaw) decides to try to reproduce the smells of the women of the world with unorthodox means - by killing them, wrapping them in animal fat, cooking the fat and so on. I'm going to agree with Mr. Ebert: this concept, by arrogant reclusive Patrick Süskind, is pure genius, plain and simple - isn't our smell as unique as our fingerprints? - and manages to take it to an impressive level of surrealism, culminating in what may be one of the most impressive endings in the cinema. Accusations of misogyny are misguided - if anything, the power of woman is exalted to a great degree, with the Perfect Perfume coming from a combination of rich and poor, virgin and whore - although the casting of Dustin Hoffman as Whishaw's mentor is a little off.