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The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 14 October 1946 (Sweden)
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2:28 | Trailer
A married woman and a drifter fall in love, then plot to murder her husband.

Director:

Tay Garnett

Writers:

Harry Ruskin (screen play), Niven Busch (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Lana Turner ... Cora Smith
John Garfield ... Frank Chambers
Cecil Kellaway ... Nick Smith
Hume Cronyn ... Arthur Keats
Leon Ames ... Kyle Sackett
Audrey Totter ... Madge Gorland
Alan Reed ... Ezra Liam Kennedy
Jeff York ... Blair
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Storyline

Drifter Frank Chambers arrives at a quiet California roadside restaurant where he meets and falls for drop-dead gorgeous Cora, the wife of restaurant owner Nick Smith. After weaseling his way into a job, the two begin a deadly love affair and cook up plans to end her marriage and start a new life together. After a few botched attempts at a clean break, they are forced to put their honeymoon on hold after being rerouted into the arms of a D.A. hot to convict and a corrupt lawyer with designs on Cora. Frank and Cora thought they packed just enough luck to avoid what should be unavoidable but the duo failed to account for the possible intervention of a formidable force that doesn't need a badge. Written by Mae Moreno

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Book that Blazed to Best-Seller Fame! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 October 1946 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Bar-B-Q See more »

Filming Locations:

Laguna Beach, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,683,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As originally written in the novel, Madge was a lion tamer. Tay Garnett even filmed the scene in which she introduces Frank to her cats. During shooting, a tiger sprayed the two stars, prompting John Garfield to jokingly ask for stunt pay. See more »

Goofs

When Frank tries to stop Cora from calling the District Attorney, he holds the phone's receiver up in the air. The phone then rings, which it would not have been able to do if it were off the hook. See more »

Quotes

Frank Chambers: With my brains and your looks, we could go places.
See more »

Crazy Credits

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

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »


Soundtracks

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 »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
She's funny that way....
9 June 2006 | by jotix100See 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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