Perfume Essay

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This essay will compare and contrast the various methods used by the author and director of the novel Perfume. Perfume, written by Patrick Süskind and adapted by Tom Tykwer, is a dramatic, crime thriller about the life of a murderer. Born and raised in Paris, Jean-Baptiste survives the most gruelling childhood; his father unknown and mother executed for attempting to kill him, rejected by the wet nurses in the village and when finally taken in by Madame Gaillard at the orphanage, the children endeavour to kill him. They fear he is dangerous because of his lack of personal scent. However Grenouille survives through even their best efforts, survives the measles, dysentery, chicken pox and cholera. It is clear that this child is special not only because of his amazing ability to endure the most appalling conditions but also because of his exceptionally talented sense of smell. The title “Perfume” gives the reader/viewer a good idea of what to expect from the very beginning. Trying to translate Grenouille’s olfactory language into visual picture was from the beginning a mammoth task than is expertly accomplished by the director through the use of audio and several visual components. It is however much easier to do in a book because the reader can be manipulated through their personal experience with smell. Therefore from this point the book is mildly better even though it is at a disadvantage because the reader has no visual aid. The main themes of Perfume are black humour, emotionally/mentally challenged people, hatred of humanity and seeing importance in others life only when they affect your own. These themes are portrayed well throughout both the book and film. The most prominent is seeing importance in others life only when they affect your own. For example, Madame Gaillard dies in a tragic way shortly after she sells Grenouille. In the book she dies of cancer in a crowded bed, in the film she is slit at the throat as she returns home. Monsieur Grimal falls...
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