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The Postman Always Rings Twice 1981

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Drifter Frank Chambers (Jack Nicholson), is headed nowhere. Then he drifts into a job at a roadside diner and sees his boss‚ alluring young wife Cora (Jessica Lange). They are both compelled by agonising passions they can neither control or completely understand, to become lovers with savage intensity. Now Frank and Cora have a goal in life: to be together. With frenzied and reckless desperation they plot to murder Cora's husband Nick (John Colicos): there are no other solutions to their inflamed desires.

Starring:
Anjelica Huston, John P. Ryan
Rental Formats:
DVD

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_18_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 56 minutes
Starring Anjelica Huston, John P. Ryan, Michael Lerner, Jessica Lange, Jack Nicholson, John Colicos
Director Bob Rafelson
Genres Drama, Thriller
Rental release Title not released yet
Main languages English

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
This item has not been released yet and is not eligible to be reviewed.

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
In typical 80s style, Rafelson's remake of this noir classic is remembered for the notorious table-top sex scene between Lange and Nicholson - and that's a real shame, because it's that scene which actually skews the entire movie and tears the heart out of what should have been a noir classic of star-crossed passion.

By opting for the explicitly steamy rather than the heartwrenching emotion of the 1946 classic, Rafelson paints an unsympathetic portrait of the two leads from the outset, which, whilst in-keeping with the rules of noir, does somewhat distance the viewer from engaging with Lange especially for much of the first half of the film.

The second half makes up for it however as the inevitable tragedy is built up with terrific pace and gut-punching suspense, and the outcome of it all does leave the audience feeling a real connection with the ill-fated pair. The acting really improves as the film progrsses, but that's very much in tandem with the improvement in the script.

This really is a good movie, it has aged well and looks and sounds fantastic in a widescreen print on (region free) blu-ray. Ultimately, it's one of Lange's better performances and Nicholson is memorably roguish, albeit with a heart, in the way only Nicholson can be.

Recommended, if you can forgive the table-ending, and at this price it's a steal!
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Format: VHS Tape
At the time of its release this film attracted considerable notoriety for its explicit sex-on-the-kitchen table scene. Apart from that, this is a pretty unmemorable film, although it's hard to fault the performances of either Jack Nicholson or Jessica Lange. You could put it down to a lack of 'chemistry' between the two stars, but in my opinion it's simply that a story such as this deserves to be told in moody black-and-white.
In the early 1980's there was a minor Hollywood craze for remaking classic 'film noir' movies from the late 1940's. This film (like 'Cat People', whch came out at about the same time) was not a bad film, but its main achievement was to remind everyone how good the original film was.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I ordered this film as I knew that my sons would like it (they are both adults). It came from the Czech Republic complete with Czech writing on the box and menus, and soundtrack also in Czech, but this was a minor detail as the DVD contains the original English soundtrack and also subtitles if you need them. Also supplied was an instruction sheet giving simple to follow instructions of how the select the English soundtrack from the Czech menu system. We didn't need them however as one of my sons was able to work out how to do this himself in seconds.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is another remake of a film staring Lana Turner and the late John Garfield, this one stars Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. Jack is one of my favourite actors he has now retired but has made a lot of very good films,
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is not the sort of film I normally like to watch and the first time I saw it it left a bad taste in my mouth and even made me bad-tempered when I got home from the cinema. But at the same time I was left very much aware that the sex scene in the kitchen had produced in me that feeling of awe and admiration which is the authentic recognition of the Sublime. I was convinced from the start that here was one of the finest things ever seen on film - a ten minute work of art in itself, comparable, on different grounds, to anything that Manny Farber had ever singled out from it's context.
Since then I have been compelled to admire the sheer craftsmanship with which the film is put together - its tone, texture, pace, editing, acting, everything. The entire first 20 minutes of the film leading up to the scene in the kitchen is as impeccable a piece of film art as I've ever seen.

Anyone reasonably versed in literature could hardly fail to recognise that this is a re-working of 'Therese Raquin' after Macbeth, with the new background for the tragedy of 30's Depression America. And this is almost a Tragedy in the Aristotelian or literary sense, but of these two particular low life individuals as representative of humanity in general.
It's down to that sex scene in the kitchen and its sheer human/godlike mixture of weakness/grandeur which achieves the sort of grand pathos, or human sublime, that 'Gladiator' aims for in the early battle scene and its slow motion 'musical conclusion' (I mention Gladiator because almost everyone will know the sequence I refer to and NOT because it's particularly good or effective).
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By Mr. Joe HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on 28 Feb. 2004
Format: DVD
THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE (1981) serves as a cautionary lesson to anyone who's considering renting or buying a film on the strength of its starring leads, and then proceeds to plunk down pounds after asking the rhetorical question, "With that cast, how bad can it be?"
Jack Nicholson is drifter Frank Chambers, who washes up in a rural roadhouse run by Nick Papadakis (John Colicos) and his too young (for him) wife, Cora (Jessica Lange). The time is the 1930s, and the place somewhere in the coastal mountains between Los Angeles and San Francisco. After Chambers is employed by Nick as a mechanic in the outpost's garage, Frank and Cora soon ignite a spark of mutual lust that eventually spreads into a conflagration of betrayal, attempted murder, murder, violent sex, insurance company venality, blackmail, and bad driving.
There's a good story here somewhere, so how did it go so badly wrong? Most damaging, there's no likable character for the audience to champion. Nicholson's character is as sleazy and vicious as any role he's ever done. Cora, married to an unsuitable older man for reasons we never learn, initially gains some audience compassion, perhaps. But then, after she demonstrates a cold-bloodedness worthy even of Frank, I ceased sympathizing with the character. Of the lot, only Nick is blameless, but he's such an old fool that it's hard to care.
The supporting cast is no better. The award for Worst Performance In A Negligible Role (Female) has to go to Anjelica Huston as Madge, a lion tamer and manager of a traveling wild cat show, who sports a goofy accent and hairdo worthy of Natasha (of "Boris and Natasha" on the old Bullwinkle TV series). The same award for a male actor is due William Traylor as Sackett, the Los Angeles DA out to nail our heroic couple.
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