Remember My Name

Remember My Name is a 1978 American thriller film written and directed by Alan Rudolph and produced by Robert Altman. Geraldine Chaplin stars as a deranged woman, determined to get back her husband, Anthony Perkins.

Remember My Name
Poster of the movie Remember My Name.jpg
Directed byAlan Rudolph
Produced byRobert Altman
Written byAlan Rudolph
StarringGeraldine Chaplin
Anthony Perkins
Moses Gunn
Berry Berenson
Jeff Goldblum
Dennis Franz
Music byAlberta Hunter
CinematographyTak Fujimoto
Edited byWilliam A. Sawyer
Tom Walls
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
October 1, 1978
Running time
94 minutes
CountryUnited States

Rudolph explained what he wanted to achieve: "an update of the classic woman's melodramas of the Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck, Joan Crawford era."[1] The film had a successful run in Paris before opening in New York City.


Neil Curry (Perkins) is living a happy life with his second wife Barbara (Berry Berenson) in California after abandoning his first wife Emily (Chaplin) in New York. Their life of domestic bliss is interrupted when Emily comes back from prison, where she had served a 12-year sentence for murdering Neil's former lover. She arrives in California to wreak havoc and also to claim Neil back.[2]



The San Francisco Chronicle gave the film 4 out of 5 stars, praising Perkins and describing Chaplin's performance as "extraordinary" and that she "adopts a unique speech pattern as Emily. She says everything as though she's rehearsed it and now is blurting it out in what she hopes will be accepted as a reasonable replica of casual speech. Emily's manner only loses its furtive, dodging quality when she feels in control or when she flies into a rage." The review also praises how Rudolph "embellishes his film with sardonic humor" and the "comically macabre touch" of TV news in the background of disasters such as an earthquake that killed one million people in Budapest.[3]

The Washington Post described the film as a "neurotic film noir" that is also a "gripping tale of sexual frustration." The reviewer was also impressed with Chaplin's performance: "Chaplin is spooky, spookier even than Perkins, in this complex performance as a woman who's painfully adjusting to freedom."[4] Jack Kroll of Newsweek praised Rudolph's direction: "he has a real eye for the visual paradox, the elegant and even beautiful form in which this savagery sometimes works." The review praised Perkins as a "specialist at playing the 'nice guy' whose smile and sweat suggest something not so nice underneath." Kroll also heaped praise on Chaplin, saying that her performance "creates something new in the modern pantheon of weirdos. She is chilling in her ability to be both guilty and innocent, victim and predator, catatonic and driven by feelings so deep they draw blood."[5]


The film's soundtrack was composed of songs written for the film and original recordings by singer and composer Alberta Hunter, a veteran of the 1920s–30s nightclub scene and Broadway who appeared in the musicals Shuffle Along and Show Boat with the London cast. The 82-year-old Hunter was in the midst of a musical reemergence when the film was released, having left show business for 20 years after the death of her mother to become a nurse.[6][7]

1."Workin' Man a/k/a I Got Myself a Workin' Man"Hunter3:44
2."You Reap Just What You Sow"Hunter4:05
3."The Love I Have for You"Hunter3:40
4."I've Got a Mind to Ramble"Hunter2:38
5."Remember My Name"Hunter3:39
6."My Castle's Rockin'"Hunter3:09
7."Downhearted Blues"Hunter, L. Austin5:40
8."Some Sweet Day"Hunter4:21
9."Chirpin' the Blues"Hunter, L. Austin4:02
10."I Begged and Begged You"Hunter3:15


Miami International Film Festival

  • 1978: Best Actress – Geraldine Chaplin

Paris Film Festival

  • 1978: Best Actress – Geraldine Chaplin


  1. ^ Rosenbaum, Jonathan. "Remember My Name". Film Quarterly. Vol. 32, no. 3, Spring, 1979
  2. ^ Flatley, Guy (December 16, 1977). "At The Movies". The New York Times. p. 64. Retrieved July 30, 2011.
  3. ^ LaSalle, Mick. Mr. Perkins and the Vicious Stalker. San Francisco Chronicle. January 13, 1995.
  4. ^ Kempley, Rita. Weekend at the Movies; "Remember My Name". The Washington Post. September 6, 1985
  5. ^ Kroll, Jack. "Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman". Newsweek. April 2, 1978. p. 82B
  6. ^ The New York Times said this about the recording, "...produced by John Hammond and featuring sympathetic support by outstanding jazz musicians, can be savored without reference to the film. Indeed, the recording stands autonomously as one of the most relaxed and vibrant blues/jazz sessions released in the past year."
  7. ^ "Alberta Hunter - Remember My Name (Original Soundtrack Recording)". Discogs. Retrieved July 9, 2020.

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