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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
February 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] It 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 (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 served a 12-year sentence for murdering Neil's former lover. She arrives in California to wreak havoc and also to claim back Neil.[2]



The San Francisco Chronicle gave the film 4 out of 5 stars. They praised Perkins and described 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 humour", and the "comically macabre touch" of TV news in the background of disasters such as an earthquake that killed 1 million in Budapest.[3]

The Washington Post described it 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 as 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 soundtrack for the film was made up of songs written for the film and original recordings of songs by the singer and composer Alberta Hunter.

Alberta Hunter was a veteran of the 1920s-1930s nightclub scene and Broadway, appearing in the musicals Shuffle Along and Showboat with the London cast. Hunter, who was 82 at the time, was in the midst of a musical reemergence when the film was released having left show business for twenty years, after the death of her mother, to become a nurse.

[6] The Robust Artistry of Alberta Hunter


1 Workin' Man 2 You Gotta Reap What You Sow 3 Love I Have for You 4 I've Got a Mind to Ramble 5 Remember My Name 6 My Castle's Rockin' 7 Downhearted Blues 8 Some Sweet Day 9 Chirpin' the Blues 10 I Begged and Begged You


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."

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