Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (German Das Parfum – Die Geschichte eines Mörders) is a 2006 German film directed by Tom Tykwer based on the novel Perfume by Patrick Süskind.
Based on the Patrick Süskind novel Perfume, the plot tells the story of the misanthropic, sociopathic, olfactory genius Grenouille and his homicidal quest for the perfect scent, ending in his macabre death engineered by his own masterly powers of influencing people through scents.
In the 1700's, well before the French Revolution, a young man is brought before a rabid crowd. His name is Jean-Baptiste Grenouille and he is a convicted murderer. His sentence to death is read off: In two days hence, he would be executed.
Flashing back to when Grenouille was a baby. His mother gives birth to him in a fish market in France. She tries to hide the child under the table so he would die. When Grenouille gives his first cry, it alerts the other people to his presence. The woman tries to run away but she is caught and hanged afterwards. The baby is sent to an orphanage. The children there fear the baby and try to suffocate it. Madame Galliard, who owns the place, beats the children for their attempt to smother Grenouille.
The child grows up in the orphanage, not being able to speak until after 5 years of age. Instead, it is discovered that Grenouille has an extraordinary sense of smell. He is able to tell different things by their scents. When Grenouille turns 12 years old, Madame Gaillard decides that he can no longer stay at her orphanage so she sells him to a tanner. Shortly afterwards, she dies after being robbed of the money she gained from the sale. Grenouille (Whishaw) stays with the tanner until he is a young man.