The Postman Always Rings Twice Review

Postman Always Rings Twice, The
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......

by Kim Newman |
Published on
Release Date:

20 Mar 1981

Running Time:

113 minutes



Original Title:

Postman Always Rings Twice, The

Sassy Lana Turner and drifter John Garfield fall in love and plot to bump off her dull-as-ditchwater husband in smouldering film noir style. First they wire up his bath and then when that fails, they opt for the old car-pushed-off-the-cliff lark.

The film skilfully exploits the ambiguous moral subtext as the protagonists wrestle with their consciences and a brooding mutual mistrust. A dark, menacing atmosphere and a powerful denouement make this a triumph of plot-driven narrative and sparky dialogue.

Both leads excell at showing a true feeling (be it love or lust) but both covered in the guilty angst that one will betray the other. Edge of your seat stuff.

A good adaptation from the James M. Cain novel.
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