6.6/10
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54 user 41 critic

The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981)

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

Director:

Bob Rafelson

Writers:

James M. Cain (novel), David Mamet (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Nicholson ... Frank Chambers
Jessica Lange ... Cora Papadakis
John Colicos ... Nick Papadakis
Michael Lerner ... Mr. Katz
John P. Ryan ... Kennedy
Anjelica Huston ... Madge
William Traylor William Traylor ... Sackett
Thomas Hill Thomas Hill ... Barlow (as Tom Hill)
Jon Van Ness ... Motorcycle Cop
Brian Farrell Brian Farrell ... Mortenson
Raleigh Bond Raleigh Bond ... Insurance Salesman
William Newman ... Man from Home Town
Albert Henderson Albert Henderson ... Art Beeman
Ken Magee Ken Magee ... Scoutmaster
Eugene Peterson Eugene Peterson ... Doctor
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Storyline

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 <clarkec@topaz.cqu.edu.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

If there was an Eleventh Commandment, they would have broken that too. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | West Germany

Language:

English | Greek

Release Date:

20 March 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El cartero llama dos veces See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$12,376,625

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$44,376,625
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When plotting the characterization for the role of Cora, Jessica Lange decided the young woman had first tried to make it as a movie actress in Hollywood, struck out, and eventually married. When Jack Nicholson learned this, he gave her the autobiography of trashy, blonde, B-movie actress Barbara Payton ("I Am Not Ashamed", published in 1963.) Lange based her character's history partly on Payton, who, like her, was born in Cloquet, Minnesota. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 35 mins) When Cora walks to the door of the café after coming back from her mother's, her zipper and zipper pull show. What we see is an "invisible" zipper which were not invented until the early 1960's. See more »

Quotes

Frank Chambers: What are you, uh, Greek or something?
Cora: What... do I look Greek?
See more »

Alternate Versions

CBS edited 30 minutes from this film for its 1986 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Greatest Sexy Moments (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
You're scum, Frank! I knew that when I met you... You'll never change.
11 July 2010 | by lastliberalSee all my reviews

Frank (Jack Nicholson) is a Depression-era (regular gas was 16 cents a gallon; ethyl 18 cents) drifter, a thief, and a con man. Cora (Jessica Lange) is the bored and sensuous cook in a tavern run by her older Greek husband, Nick (John Colicos).

The first time Nick goes to town, Frank & Cora end up on the kitchen table in mad, savage, animalistic lovemaking. They try to run away together, but come back to kill her husband.

When they failed the first time, they staged a wreck. Cora got so excited she spread her legs right there on the ground near her supposedly dead husband.

The film is full of passion and excitement. Things change rapidly, and you are always guessing. Anjelica Huston even pops in as a weekend fling for Frank.

The ending was a surprise, but it fit perfectly.


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