Everyday Activist - Perfume War

Posted on Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 08:00 AM

Perfume War (aka March Forth: One Scent at a Time)

Movie Review by Everyday Activist X CalgaryMovies.com

For such an important film, Perfume War made some odd marketing choices; first the title, then to open on Easter weekend and finally have no information about the movie at Hudson's Bay where "7 Virtues" perfume, is sold. When I went to The Bay to buy it, the associates assumed that the movie only played Easter weekend. Seriously, how hard is it to send to HBC stores in five cities which screened the film - Calgary, Toronto, Halifax, Vancouver and Ottawa, a movie poster or a stack of postcards? I caught the film on Tuesday when I came back to Calgary, only to find out that Easter Sunday W. Brett Wilson & Warrant officer Rob Dolson did a Q&A. I didn’t ask about the numbers for that; however, at my screening there were close to forty people, which was a good indication that the film would be held over.

The documentary was about how a friendship transformed the lives of people affected by war, through providing opportunities for them to do business by selling essential oils. These ethically sourced oils from conflict zones such as Afghanistan were then turned into a perfume line by Canadian entrepreneur, Barb Stegemann. So I can kind of see a Perfume War, though to me it suggested DoTerra versus Young Living or a similar perfume/essential oil rivalry. My working title, March Forth: One Scent at a Time, captures the perfume aspects as well as the devastating trauma suffered by Captain Trevor Greene, who inspired Ms. Stegemann to start the 7 Virtues line, since he was struck with an axe in the head on March 4th, 2006 and his book has the same title. His story about his activism and struggle to learn to walk again is also featured in the film.

To come full circle, 7 Virtues perfume, inspired by one soldier could help many. Perfume War talks about mental health issues in soldiers and how making an association between “good smells to good memories” would help, but it doesn’t talk about vetiver essential oil, made from Haitian plants, reducing stress. Because of its woodsy smell and fixative properties, vetiver is a commonly used essential oil in male fragrances. To fine tune it with other healing oils could possibly make a huge difference to a lot people, including me. I like to mix the Vetiver perfume with the Orange Blossom one. Unlike any perfume I’ve tried, 7 Virtues lasts a long time, even after a bath.

Why yes, Perfume War personally spoke to me; nothing says Sima Chowdhury like writers, activism, essential oils, brain injury and John Lennon. Really, John Lennon was mentioned in the movie and we have the same birthday. I cried through the whole thing and have plans to watch it again next Tuesday at 9 pm.

Updated on 04/30/2017:  Everyday Activist: Perfume War Revisited >

Calgary Showtimes: Perfume War >


NOTE: The showtimes listed on CalgaryMovies.com come directly from the theatres' announced schedules, which are distributed to us on a weekly basis. All showtimes are subject to change without notice or recourse to CalgaryMovies.com.