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The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

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

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(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Jeff York ...
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Storyline

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 <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Taglines:

Lana Turner. John Garfield. M-G-Marvelous! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

2 May 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El cartero llama dos veces  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James M. Cain also adapted his novel into a play which was performed in New York at the Lyceum Theatre for 72 performances, from 25 February 1936 to April 1936. The cast included Richard Barthelmess as Frank, Mary Philips as Cora, Joseph Greenwald as Nick and Dudley Clements as Sackett, with minor roles by Joseph Cotten and Charles Halton. See more »

Goofs

Frank and Cora are further apart, then closer together, when they get home from the late night swim. See more »

Quotes

Cora Smith: That note I left Nick, if he gets back before we do and finds it...
Frank Chambers: Where'd you leave it?
Cora Smith: In the cash register!
Frank Chambers: That's terrific, that's the first place he'll look.
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Crazy Credits

Ending credits are shown over the hardcover book of the same name. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Spin City: The Doorman Always Rings Twice (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

There is a Tavern in the Town
(pub. 1883) (uncredited)
Traditional
Sung a cappella by Cecil Kellaway and John Garfield
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Frequently Asked Questions

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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.


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