The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

Not Rated  |   |  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir  |  2 May 1946 (USA)
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A married woman and a drifter fall in love, then plot to murder her husband... but even once the deed is done, they must live with the consequences of their actions.



(screen play), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Complete credited cast:
Audrey Totter ...
Jeff York ...


Nick Smith, the middle-aged proprietor of a roadside restaurant, hires drifter Frank Chambers as a handyman. Frank eventually begins an affair with Nick's beautiful wife Cora, who talks Frank into helping her kill Nick, by "accident." But the best laid plans...... Written by Jim Beaver <>

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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 May 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El cartero llama dos veces  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System) (5.0) (L-R)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


As a contrast to the fact she's playing an inherently evil character, Lana Turner wears white throughout most of the film. See more »


The way Cora hugs Frank changes after the cop and DA look at the dead cat. See more »


Nick Smith: [about his plan to sell Twin Oaks and move to Canada to take care of his sister] My mind's made up.
Cora Smith: So, you've given it a great deal of thought, your mind's made up? Without even talking it over with me, your mind's made up. Well, mine isn't!
Nick Smith: [coldly] That's too bad.
See more »


She's Funny That Way
(1928) (uncredited)
Music by Neil Moret
Lyrics by Richard A. Whiting
Played on guitar and Sung by Cecil Kellaway
See more »

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User Reviews

She's funny that way....
9 June 2006 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Those movie audiences who think that explicit sexual scenes shown in movies these days make a film sexy, should take a look at this 1946 steamy MGM picture. "The Postman Always Ring Twice" made an impact on the way movies looked at the time, when the censure of the Hays Code dominated what could be shown on the screen for general consumption.

James M. Cain's novel of the same title was adapted by Harry Ruskin and Niven Busch, two writers that clearly caught all the nuances of the book. Ty Garnett direction made this film a surprise and a star out of the gorgeous Lana Turner, who was at the height of her beauty when the movie was shot. The great camera work of Sidney Wagner made this movie a classic for its sensual look it focused on its female star.

Nick, the older owner of the roadside diner, has married Cora, a woman much too young for him. Cora, who clearly has found her meal ticket, is happy in the way her life has changed. When Frank Chambers arrive at the diner, Cora realizes the mistake she made in marrying Nick; Frank stands in sharp contrast with Nick. Cora's sexual needs awaken when Frank pays attention to her. As lovers, we realize they are doomed.

Because both Cora and Frank are amateurs, they botch the well laid plans they have for getting rid of Nick. Everything conspires against them because it's too clear what they have done. They will not be able to get away with the crime, or a life together because unknown to them everyone had seen through them from the beginning.

Lana Turner, whose whole wardrobe is white, made a great Cora. She is heartless, but she is all sexual whenever she is around Frank. This was perhaps was one of the best things Ms. Turner did in the movies. John Garfield, who is so sure of himself, at the start, loses all his will because Cora smolders him and he doesn't think rationally. Cecil Kellaway is good as the older Nick. Leon Ames, Hume Cronyn are seen in small roles.

"The Postman Always Ring Twice" is a classic of this genre thanks to Ty Garnett's direction and a brilliant appearance by an inspired Lana Turner.

22 of 38 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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