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Postman Always Rings Twice (1981) [Blu-ray]

3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
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Product Description

In this intense, gritty and erotic re-make of the 1946 version, the sensuous wife of a lunch wagon proprietor and a rootless drifter begin a sordidly steamy affair and conspire to murder her Greek husband. Featuring a star-studded cast including Jack Nicholson, Jessica Lange, Anjelica Huston, Christopher Lloyd and Michael Lerner.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars All happiness demands its prize! July 10 2004
There we have a well remade from the James Cain's novel . It's good to remind that Visconti made a superb film in 1941 with Ossesione but without this cast and this atmosphere ; Visconti is concerned about other issues and abandons the clues of the film noir.
Nicholson is hired to work in a gas station ; the seductive Jessica Lange (who lives a ficticious live with an alcoholic and inhuman greek husband) establishes the chemical and sexual rapprot with Nicholson and become lovers.
There will be too much to watch in this sordid , nocturnal and bitter tale ; but the dazzling direction of Nichols , the ravishing acting of Lange and the cold blooded mind of Nicholson make a team hard to equal . There are smart twists about Macbeth and his wife in this one (a man without ambition is not a man) . I've always thought the film noir is the last son of the greek tragedy: any happiness is innocent ; and only under this gaze it's possible to understand and to discuss a film like this.
Excellent and fundamental in your golden collection. A cult movie and a classic sample of the purest film noir.
It's remarkable to state that the best trilogy of films noir in the eighties were with this one ; Bad timing and Body heat .
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4.0 out of 5 stars Postman is right, the second time around Jan. 23 2004
By A Customer
Twice is nice. Hollywood had to try twice to get this story right. Lana Turner was beautiful in the 1946 version, but Jessica Lange was something to kill for opposite Jack Nicholson.
Such raw sensuality would easily persuade a man to lose his very soul. Nicholson's part is certainly unscrupulous to begin with, but in Jessica Lange he finds a confederate with even less scruples. The legal loose ends that dangled in the earlier version are avoided this time with a more plausible chain of events... and the story ends when the story ought to end, instead of being dragged on.
Wonderful character and situation development, intriguing and engaging, even when you know the story. Nice twists of the story from the Lana Turner and Italian ("Ossessione" 1943) versions.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Much closer to the book Sept. 20 2003
This movie was much closer to the book than the original movie, which for me was a treat. Filled with torrid sex and self centered reckless abandon, the two main characters convey those in the book as they were meant to be. This fleshes out the story quite nicely and keeps it moving through the twists and turns in the plot. Though there were a couple of minor changes in the story, what surprised me, and really let me down was the very ending. Though viewers should pick up on the irony of the situation, it is really driven home in the book!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Underwhelming July 20 2003
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 dollars 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).
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Darn good Film-Noir if you've never seen the 1946 original. This version stars Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. Jack is a drifter who comes upon this backroad cafe. Here he meets Jessica Lange who is the wife of the owner of this cafe. She cooks, she serves and then has fast, rough, torrid and spontaneous sex with Jack. The sex scenes are way too hot for broadcast television and will be edited for content. So see this movie on DVD to see it all. This murder-mystery is fast-paced and has many twists and turns along the way. (Incidentally, Angelica Huston (the circus lady) and Jack Nicholson "knew" each other at the time)
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4.0 out of 5 stars Underrated, but still not entirely realized July 10 2002
Format:VHS Tape
This remake of the 1946 film which starred Lana Turner and John Garfield is significantly better than its reputation. The script, adapted from James M. Cain's first novel, is by the award-winning playwright David Mamet, while the interesting and focused cinematography is by Sven Nykvist, who did so much exquisite work for Swedish director Ingmar Bergman. An excellent cast is led by Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange, whose cute animal magnetism is well displayed. Bob Rafelson, who has to his directorial credit the acclaimed Five Easy Pieces (1970) and The King of Marvin Gardens (1972), both also starring Jack Nicholson, captures the raw animal sex that made Cain's novel so appealing (and shocking) to a depression-era readership and brings it up to date. Hollywood movies have gotten more violent and scatological since 1981, but they haven't gotten any sexier. This phenomenon is in part due to fears occasioned by the rise of AIDS encouraged by the usual blue stocking people. Don't see this movie if sex offends you.
Lange is indeed sexy and more closely fits the part of a lower-middle class woman who married an older man, a café owner, for security than the stunning blonde bombshell Lana Turner, who was frankly a little too gorgeous for the part. John Colicos plays the café owner, Nick Papadakis, with clear fidelity to Cain's conception. In the 1946 production, the part was played by Cecil Kellaway, who was decidedly English; indeed they changed the character's name to Smith. Also changed in that production was the name of the lawyer Katz (to Keats). One wonders why. My guess is that in those days they were afraid of offending Greeks, on the one hand, and Jews on the other. Here Katz is played by Michael Lerner who really brings the character to life.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Romantic scenes were great but eventually I got bored
The 1981 remake of the original 1946 version stars Jack Nicholson and Jessica Lange. The story is about a Depression era love affair between a drifter and the wife of a... Read more
Published on June 22 2002 by Linda Linguvic
4.0 out of 5 stars Title Fits the Movie!
This was a very good hard-boiled noir movie. I'm surprised by all the complaints about this movie. People watch an R-rated hard-boiled noir movie then complain about the violence... Read more
Published on April 15 2002 by EarlRandy
4.0 out of 5 stars how could you go wrong with jack and jessica?
ok, this one actually is deserving closer to three and a half stars but there is no option for half stars on amazon unfortunately. Read more
Published on March 5 2002 by Brian R Yandle
1.0 out of 5 stars Dreadful! 0 starts would be better!
I am in awe how people can think that this rubbish is a classic film! I am never fond of "anti-hero" films at he best of times, but there is no one in this film I could... Read more
Published on Jan. 20 2002 by Ultimate Reviewer
3.0 out of 5 stars Hauntingly Trite
This film is certainly unique. Despite a wonderful cast and an engaging cinematic style, it leaves one with the feeling of 'Why'? In this case, the 'Why? Read more
Published on July 2 2001 by Marc Cabir Davis
4.0 out of 5 stars Smoldering, sinister & sexy - stellar performances!
Agreed, it's not a classic - but I really enjoyed this. And I enjoyed it not just for the stunning performances by Nicholson and Lange. Read more
Published on April 16 2001 by Janet Scott
3.0 out of 5 stars pleasently surprised
I actually enjoyed this movie. I agree with most of the previous comments. It's not a classic, and Jack certainly makes this movie come alive. Read more
Published on Jan. 25 2001 by andrew griffiths
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