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Memento Mori (1992)


A comedy-drama by Jack Clayton, Alan Kelley, and Jeanie Sims, based on the novel by Muriel Spark, and first broadcast on 19 April 1992, 9.45pm (BBC2)


Memento Mori image #1

With thanks to Nadine for the photo.


Memento Mori follows the antics of a group of elderly friends in 1950's London. 

Among the group is Dame Lettie Colston, who is being plagued by telephone calls from a mysterious stranger with a disturbing message: 'Remember you must die'.  Soon those associated with the strident old lady are also receiving the unexplained phonecalls, each with the same chilling reminder. 

Dame Lettie's brother, Godfrey Colston, is concerned about the phonecalls but preoccupied by his own troubles.  He is attempting to conceal past and present indiscretions from his wife, whose advanced age seems to be getting the better of her wits.  Scheming housekeeper Mabel Pettigrew sees her employer's predicament as an opportunity to blackmail him. 

Godfrey's young acquaintance, Olive Mannering, is also harbouring a secret, in the form of a visitor whose presence is likely further to upset the Colstons.


Maggie Smith ... Mabel Pettigrew

Michael Hordern ... Godfrey Colston

Renee Asherson ... Charmian Colston

Stephanie Cole ... Dame Lettie Colston

Thora Hird ... Jean Taylor

Maurice Denham ... Guy Leet

John Wood ... Henry Mortimer

Zoë Wanamaker ... Olive Mannering

Cyril Cusack ... Percy Mannering

Peter Eyre ... Eric Colston


Director: Jack Clayton
Producer: Louis Marks
Associate Producers: Carolyn Montagu, Derek Nelson, and Mark Shivas
Original Music: Georges Delerue
Cinematography: Remi Adefarasin
Film Editor: Mark Day
Costume Designer: Les Lansdown


Memento Mori by Muriel Spark

Related links

Memento Mori production photo - Cinema.de (scroll down webpage to see photo)

Memento Mori review - MUBI (reveals plot details)

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