Originally Posted by BRussell
I've seen perfume - does it have an evil/vengeful mother?
Uh yeah, she more or less popped him out onto the dirty streets of a fish market and left him to rot. Wiki says it best
Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is an orphan growing up in 18th century Paris. From the moment he is born, a scene which delivers a rapid series of focused visuals of objects (rotting meat, manure, dead fish, maggots squirming in carrion and disposed meat scraps, etc) in a squalid, public open-air meat market that all allude to a scent that would be, to any average human nose, extremely unsavory and repellant, and to the newly-born infant Jean-Baptiste, possessed as he is of extraordinary olfactory capability, surely shocking and most likely a lasting impression on the olfactorily-gifted babe. This fetid medley of scents does more to produce a healthy cry in the newborn babe than a smack on the bottom would normally do, and people around the market quickly turn on Jean-Baptiste's mother, accusing her of intent to abandon her child to die, though as explained in the film, all her previous brood had been still-born or did not live long after birth, so perhaps her culpability in this act is questionable. Regardless, Jean-Baptiste's mother is sentenced to death, and Jean-Baptiste is placed in an orphanage.
So yes, questionable, but it is part of his journey into life and obsession with a woman's scent.
Maybe I was really thinking of...Officer:
He's a tranvestite!Dr. Fred Richmond:
Ah, not exactly. A man who dresses in women's clothing in order to achieve a sexual change, or satisfaction, is a transvestite. But in Norman's case, he was simply doing everything possible to keep alive the illusion of his mother being alive. And when reality came too close, when danger or desire threatened that illusion - he dressed up, even to a cheap wig he bought. He'd walk about the house, sit in her chair, speak in her voice. He tried to be his mother! And uh now he is.
[pause]Dr. Fred Richmond: Now that's what I meant when I said I got the story from the mother. You see, when the mind houses two personalities, there's always a conflict, a battle. In Norman's case, the battle is over, - and the dominant personality has won.
Deputy Sheriff Al Chambers:
And the forty thousand dollars? Who got that?Dr. Fred Richmond:
The swamp. These were crimes of passion, not profit.