The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  20 March 1981 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 15,818 users  
Reviews: 47 user | 33 critic

The sensuous wife of a lunch wagon proprietor and a rootless drifter begin a sordidly steamy affair and conspire to murder her Greek husband.



(novel), (screenplay)
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
William Traylor ...
Thomas Hill ...
Barlow (as Tom Hill)
Motorcycle Cop
Brian Farrell ...
Raleigh Bond ...
Insurance Salesman
William Newman ...
Man from Home Town
Albert Henderson ...
Art Beeman
Ken Magee ...
Eugene Peterson ...


This remake of the 1946 movie of the same name accounts an affair between a seedy drifter and a seductive wife of a roadside café owner. This begins a chain of events that culminates in murder. Written by Craig Clarke <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


You Will Feel The Heat. See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

20 March 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El cartero siempre llama dos veces  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)


SEK 3,841,156 (Sweden)

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


This movie's title has often erroneously been referred to as The Postman Always Knocks Twice. See more »


When Frank and Cora attempt to leave for Chicago, a portion of a modern skyscraper is clearly visible at the top of the frame as they cross the street. See more »


Cora: He wants to have a baby... How'm I gonna do that, Frank?
See more »


Spoofed in State and Main (2000) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

My big fat Greek murder
4 July 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

A travesty of a fiasco of a disaster. A simply awful 80's remake of one of the toughest, sexiest and above all best acted noir thrillers. Yes, I know Garfield and Turner would be hard to beat but Nicholson and Lange aren't even in the race. You can see old lumbering Jack thinking his lines before he speaks them, while Ms Lange's acting goes right off the scale, rarely to return.

The film has no pacing to speak of and no dramatic arc at any point in the story. It also makes unaccountable narrative jumps which if I hadn't seen the original would have made little or no sense at all. Then there's the downbeat epilogue the point of which I'm still trying to fathom, right alongside Angelica Huston's appearance (I won't elevate it to cameo status) as, get this, a circus lion-tamer who promptly beds the errant Jack before depositing her pet puma on Lange (no, I don't know why either).

As for the infamous sex-scene on the kitchen table, it comes out of nowhere with no hint of sexual chemistry between the couple beforehand and I found the fact that Nicholson pretty much half-rapes Lange to make his point, as offensive as it was gratuitous. As for Lange's dimwitted husband, Nick, he leaves no impression at all so that you don't care when he meets his end at the lovers' hands.

I've rarely seen such a poorly edited, acted and scripted so-called major Hollywood movie. Without trying to be too much the Minister for The Bleeding Obvious, by-pass this mess in favour of the black and white original every time.

6 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Intense sexual scene between Jack and Jessica! elizalisa
exactly, what's the title about? Leopold-4
The ending Lucky_C
Question - Insurance policy runman4
Does anyone know where this film was shot? Londondreamin04
femme fatale jennyt299
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