Perfect Sense
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Perfect Sense is a 2011 science fiction romantic drama film directed by David Mackenzie, written by Kim Fupz Aakeson and starring Eva Green and Ewan McGregor. In the film, a chef (McGregor) and a scientist (Green) fall in love as an epidemic begins to rob people of their sensory perceptions.


An epidemic begins to spread throughout the globe, causing humankind to lose their sensory perceptions one by one. The story focuses on two people: Susan, one of a team of epidemiologists who are trying to find the causes of the disease, and Michael, a chef who works at a busy restaurant located next to Susan s flat. The two meet and get to know each other as the epidemic progresses, a relationship which soon turns to love.

Humans begin to lose their senses one at a time. Each loss is preceded by an outburst of an intense feeling or urge. First, people begin suffering uncontrollable bouts of crying and this is soon followed by the loss of their sense of smell. An outbreak of irrational panic and anxiety, closely followed by a bout of frenzied gluttony, precedes the loss of the sense of taste. The film depicts people trying to adapt to each loss and trying to carry on living as best they can, rediscovering their remaining senses as they do so. Michael and his co-workers do their best to cook food for people who cannot smell nor taste.

The loss of hearing comes next and is accompanied by an outbreak of extreme anger and rage. Michael experiences it first and is verbally abusive at Susan who flees in fear, losing her own hearing shortly afterwards. Despite her knowledge that it was the disease that caused the outburst, Susan cannot face Michael again. People struggle to adjust and to go on living. One day, every person on Earth suddenly experiences a feeling of joyful euphoria. Susan realizes she both forgives and still loves Michael and rushes to his job. The two find each other and embrace just as they, and the rest of the world, become blind.


  • Ewan McGregor as Michael
  • Eva Green as Susan
  • Connie Nielsen as Jenny, Susan s sister
  • Stephen Dillane as Stephen, Susan s boss
  • Ewen Bremner as James, Michael s workmate
  • Denis Lawson as Michael s boss
  • Alastair Mackenzie as Susan s workmate
  • Kathryn Engels as Narrator


The film had the working title The Last Word, and Kim Fupz Aakeson s script was originally set in Copenhagen, Denmark, the capital of his homeland, but was transferred to Glasgow, Scotland, after director David Mackenzie s homeland. Scenes were shot in various locations around Glasgow, Mexico City and Kenya. The film premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.


Reviews for Perfect Sense have been mixed. Rotten Tomatoes has the film ranked at 57%. Tirdad Derakhshani of the Philadelphia Inquirer wrote in his review, The film loses its charm with annoying sequences that have a narrator explain to us The Meaning of it All and then tell us What Really Matters in life: Love. Love. Love. ; and Stephen Holden of The New York Times defined it as a solemn sci-fi parable set in present-day Glasgow, whose deepening sense of foreboding is sustained by the enigmatic, pseudo-biblical reflections of an unseen narrator. Mark Holcomb of The Village Voice said the film beautifully captures the ache and counterintuitive thrill of the days as we know them, the world as we imagine the world fading away by degrees—just don t be surprised if you find yourself longing for a contagion-spawned zombie bloodbath to counter the shambling lyricism. Writing for The A.V. Club, Alison Willmore gave a more positive appraisal: Each deprivation is preceded by a flurry of emotion that leads to the film s most vivid sequences .

The film opened at 59 cinemas on its domestic release grossing £21,675 for the weekend 7–9 October 2011.

Year 2011
ReleaseDate 2011-10-07
RuntimeMins 92
RuntimeStr 1h 32min
Plot A chef and a scientist fall in love as an epidemic begins to rob people of their sensory perceptions.
Awards Awards, 3 wins & 3 nominations
Directors David Mackenzie
Writers Kim Fupz Aakeson
Stars Ewan McGregor, Eva Green, Lauren Tempany
Produced by Gillian Berrie,Brian Coffey,Tomas Eskilsson,Peter Garde,Malte Grunert,Peter Aalbæk Jensen,Sisse Graum Jørgensen,Jamie Laurenson,Steven Little,Tristan Lynch,David Mackenzie,Marianne Moritzen,Charlotte Pedersen,Carole Sheridan,Akshay Singh,Julia Valentine
Music by Max Richter
Cinematography by Giles Nuttgens
Film Editing by Jake Roberts
Casting By Shaheen Baig
Production Design by Tom Sayer
Art Direction by Andy Thomson
Costume Design by Trisha Biggar
Makeup Department Orla Carrol,Marion McCormack,Donald McInnes,Lee Melrose
Production Management David Hancock,Danny Khoudary,Nina Sagemoen,Emma Zee,Marcela Garza
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director Mark Ash,Avani Batra,Simon Cox,Catherine Dunne,Alonso García Borja,Nick Q. Hughes,Colin Kennedy,Susie Lee,Zoe Liang,Barrie McCulloch,Giles Nuttgens,Sandra Quevedo Solis
Art Department Emiio Alday Ch&aacutelvez,Alberto Anaya Adalid,Philip Barratt,Ben Barry,James Baxter,Liam Collins,Paul Curren,Sam Curren,Derek Gray,Jane Harvie,Paul Lambie,David Macleod,Fred MacMillan,Janice Macrae,Eona McCallum,Andrew McDonald,Caroline McFarlane,Russell McGovern,Aoife McKim,Alejandro ‘Jano’ Meija Gaviño,Matt Mooney,Andrew Neilson,Jim O’Donnell,Carly Parris,Emma Pisano,David Pollack,Kenny Pratt,David Richmond,Dan Roberts,Tony Sheridan,James Shovlin,Lynsey Sinnamon,Jan Suter,Caireen Todd,John Watt,Zoe Wight,Ella Williams,Liam Collins,Jordan R.A. Mills
Sound Department Omar Aborida,Iain Anderson,Tony Cook,Phil Croal,Colin Gregory,Tom Griffiths,Kahl Henderson,Douglas MacDougall,Micheal MacKinnon,Barry O’Sullivan,Chris Sinclair,Linda Wylie,Benjamin Lecuyer
Special Effects by Joanna Dewar-Gibb,Mike Kelt,Keith Nairm,Robin Pollok,Toby Stewart
Visual Effects by Håkan Blomdahl,Andreas Hylander,Malin Leuchovius,Daniel Nielsen,Sean Wheelan
Camera and Electrical Department Simon Baker,Anna Benbow,Martin Berry,Martin Campbell,Eve Carreño,James Coulter,Luke Coulter,Steve Dall,Neil Davidson,Arthur Donnelly,Ewan Epton,Stuart Farmer,Barnaby Hall,John Hutton,Iain Johnstone,Wayne King,Jamie Knight,Damian Leitch,J.J. Lowe,Ossie McLean,Alejandro Mejía,Giles Nuttgens,Derrick Peters,John Rhymer,Andy Sauer,Neil Tomlin,Stephen Price
Casting Department Aisha Bywaters,Kahleen Crawford,Laura Donnelly,Dan Jackson,Caroline Stewart
Costume and Wardrobe Department Harriet Edmonds,Fiona King,Anna Lau,Emily Raemaekers,Anna Robbins,Widaad Williams
Editorial Department Siobhan Boyes,Matt Branton,Giles Burgess,Lorene Dewett,Henning Szpiro Eriksen,Dave Hughes,Sarah Hughes,Adam Inglis,Eimear Jenkinson,Rebecca Lloyd,Tim Morris,Shayne Murphy,Gareth Nolan,Emmet O’Neill,Robbie O’Farrell
Location Management Miglet Crichton,Michael Higson,Donald MacKinnon,Morven Ross,Beverley Syme
Music Department Claudia Ajmone-Marsan,Falko Duczmal,Dave Foster,Mok-hyun Gibson-Lane,Stefan Heinemeyer,Sebastian Krunnies,Elissa Lee,Max Richter,Mathias Schneider-Hollek
Script and Continuity Department Christian Knudsen
Transportation Department Martin Blytheway,Charlie Brennan,Jas Brown,Stephen Dorrans,Andrew Duncan,Ian Dunn,Steve Fisher,Eduardo Gómez Velázquez,Peter ‘Tank’ Hancox,Stephen Harrop,Robert Hastings,Aldo Hinojo Nava,David Inns,J.J. Lowe,David Macleod,Bill McKeller,Garry McLeod,Jack Morran,Grant Morrison,Ronnie Morrison,Colin Stephenson,Charles Stewart,Brian Williamson,Wayne Wright
Additional Crew Celia Aiken,Jim Anderson,Reno Antoniades,Natalie Bass,Mary Brehony,James Buckler,Mark Byrne,Neil Calder,Sofia Castañ&n Ornelas,Jim Clubb,Rebecca Coppin,Perry Costello,Guy Cowan,Paul Cross,Owen Derby,Audrius Dirmauskas,Brendan Diver,Laura Donnelly,Anna Duffield,Anne Forster,Rosalba Garza Treviño,Jeremy Gawade,Carl Geeson,Donal Geraghty,Simon Gillis,Lindsay Goodall,Chris Hall,James Hickey,Ruth Hodgson,Johanna Hogan,Amy Jackson,David Johnstone,Tiernan Kelly,Claire L. Kenny,Dedan Kimanthi,Constantne Kirezi,Anders Kjærhauge,Katarina Krave,Ashifa Lalani,Kasper Leick,Tom Lewis,Elizabeth MacFarlane,Joni Mackay,Virginia Maillo,Layla Mall,Carole McAllister,Linda McClure,Ashling McGrath,Kenny McGuire,Joyce Miller,Terry Miller,Methu Muthoni,Stephen Nex,Aoife O’Sullivan,John O’Sullivan,Linda Pather,Alex Perry,Simon Perry,Justin Purefoy,Rob Quigley,Morven Reid,Rachael Reitman,Abdias ‘Mateo’ Solano Gonzáles,Ross Stewart,Stef Swiatek,Mhairi Taylor,Katharine Tidy,Claire Urquhart,Euan Williamson,Michael Wood,Debra Bruce-Nazarian,Roisin Carty,Matthew Cooper,Glynn Henderson,Huma Khan
Thanks Douglas Graham
Genres Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi
Companies BBC Films, Zentropa Entertainments, Scottish Screen
Countries UK, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland
Languages English, Sign Languages
ContentRating R
ImDbRating 7
ImDbRatingVotes 60360
MetacriticRating 55
Keywords pandemic,female nudity,anarchy,cigarette smoking,voice over narration