The story of Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, who committed a series of brutal murders to achieve the cherished dream – the creation of love spirits.
“In the eighteenth century, a man lived in France, who belonged to the most brilliant and most disgusting figures of this era, so rich in genius and disgusting figures, his name was Jean-Baptiste Grenouille.”
18 century. France. Paris. In the summer, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born in the terrible stench and stuffiness of the city. Grenouille’s mother gave birth to him under the fish-shop table, among the fish heads. The mother is accused of infanticide and executed, and the newborn is given by the police to a certain wet nurse. The woman refuses to take care of the child, because, she said, he “does not smell like other children” and is obsessed with the devil. Then he is taken to Madame Gayar’s orphanage. Here Grenouille lives up to eight years, the children shun him, besides he is ugly.
Nobody suspects that he has a sharp sense of smell. Then Madame Gaillard gives it to the unskilled tanner. Grenouille works in difficult conditions, tolerates all diseases. Nothing can break it. The only joy for him is the study of new smells. Once on the street, he feels a pleasant aroma, he beckons him. The source of the fragrance is a young girl. Grenoui is intoxicated with her scent, choking the girl, enjoying her scent, and then hiding unnoticed. He is not tormented by conscience, he is under the power of fragrance.
Once he as a messenger comes to the perfumer Baldini, brings him the skin that he ordered. Baldini is a perfumer who is no longer as popular as his competitor. He tries to understand the formula of his competitor’s spirits. Grenouille, by great chance, enters the laboratory of Baldini and, submitting to his instinct, mixes the ingredients and reproduces the very spirits. Baldini is surprised. Since then, Grenouille has become a student of Baldini, he teaches Grenouille how to extract the fragrance from various colors using sublimation. Now Grenuy, having mastered this skill, has learned to
create spirits by the rules, but has come to despair, having learned that not all smells can be enclosed in a bottle.
Further, Grenouille enters the cave and lives there for several years. He realizes that he does not smell and wants to invent spirits, so that people stop eschewing him and take him for an ordinary person. After leaving his refuge, Grenouille comes under the patronage of the Marquis of Ta’ad Espinasse, the creator of the “fluid theory”, then leaves the Marquis and travels to Grasse, where he enters apprenticeship with Madame Arnulfi, the widow of the perfumer. Suddenly, next to someone’s garden, he again feels the fragrance, even more luxurious than the fragrance of a once-strangled girl. It is the smell of the young Laura Rishi who plays in the garden, and Grenouille decides that he has found the summit of future spirits, his main creation in life: the fragrance of absolute beauty. For two years he comprehends the science of collecting odors and is convinced that the smell of the skin and hair of a beautiful woman is best taken by the fabric, treated with odorless fat. A wave of strange murders begins in the city, young girls become victims. This Grenouille collects smells, shaving his victims and smearing them with fat.
People can not understand the motives of the murderer. It is established that the girls were not subjected to sexual violence. Only one person in Grasse turns out to be so shrewd that he begins to see the true motives of the murderer. This is Laura’s father, Consul of Rishi. He sees that all the victims are beautiful and begins to fear for their beautiful daughter. He secretly takes Laura away. But Grenouille finds her by his stupefying aroma, kills, smeared with grease, cuts her hair and carries her fragrance with her. Now, having enough flavors, he mixes them and creates perfect perfumes. But they finally find him and arrest him.
Grenouil was sentenced to death. But no one has learned that he created perfume. Before execution Grenouille secretly deals these spirits. Once on the scaffold, the guards released Grenouille, and the hangman’s hands dropped. The spirits were so beautiful that people instantly fell in love with Grenouille and forgot that he was a murderer. The spectators who came to see the execution appear carnal passion for each other. A crazy orgy begins. He looks at all this and, using the general madness, disappears. After the next day the dope passes, people find themselves stripped and, embarrassedly dressing, silently decide to forget about what happened. Instead of Grenouille, the innocent is executed.
Grenouille is free. But he is not happy. He understands that people will not be able to appreciate his creation. He returns to Paris, goes to the cemetery, sees thieves and vagrants gathered around the campfire. Grenouille poured his perfume from head to foot, thieves and vagabonds attacked him, captivated by fragrance, tore him to pieces and… devoured the remains of the great perfumer Jean-Baptiste Grenouille.