Reel SF

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

I Remember Mama - Violets for Dagmar

Then ...  Katrin recalls going out with Mama on a walk through the neighborhood to buy flowers for little sister Dagmar's return home from a stay in a hospital.  It was a coming-of-age moment as Mama spoke to her as she would an adult.

... and Now,  for this shot they were at the top of Green Street where it crests between Montgomery and Kearny on Telegraph Hill (map).  It looks so much tidier since the power wires were moved underground.


Then ...  They continue downhill ... but this is miles away in a completely different neighborhood - Eureka Valley in the Castro, on Liberty Street, the street where they live.  (CitySleuth, a back seat editor, would have begun the scene with this shot then cut to the one above).

... and Now,  From left to right are 525, 529, 533 and 537 Liberty Street (interesting that they increment by four).  It's great to see so little has changed here, except for the steps leading up to number 525.  


Then ...  Katrin asks if she is old enough to be allowed to drink coffee - "Comes the day you're grown up, Pop and I will know", Mama replied.  Note that in filming these location shots the moviemakers opted to clear the streets (in 1947) rather than include cars from the movie's setting (1910).

... and Now,  they were back on Telegraph Hill, from here looking north on Kearny across Union Street.  The buildings they walked by are mostly unchanged except for the added fire escape this side of the bay windows with the scalloped trim.


Then ...  At the end of that block Mama stops at a stall outside a corner store and buys ten cents worth of "welcome home" violets for Dagmar.

... and Now,  the Fog Hill Market is the current tenant at this location, 1300 Kearny at Green (map).

    From the store they head up the steep block of Green Street; this is the same block where the first picture in this post was filmed.  Behind them there are two wagons parked on the pavement...

... on location ...  Eureka! - here's an on-location photo of this very scene being filmed - note the same wagons and the partially visible flower stand.  Green Street runs down to North Beach on the left then climbs to Russian Hill in the distance.

... and Now,  the Fog Hill market is on the corner to the right and the Russian Hill skyline has sprouted a few more high-rise apartment buildings.


Then ...  While continuing up Green from Kearny Katrin promises her Mama that when she becomes rich and famous she will buy lovely clothes and jewelry for her...

... and Now,  trees obscure some of the duplicate view but we do see the same tiled awning over the doorway on the left.


Then ...  but for Mama, seeking wealth is not why she came to San Francisco; joining the rest of her family was far more important.  They are back on Kearny, half a block from the corner store.  This view looks south across Vallejo towards the downtown Financial District.

... and Now,  once again trees get in the way of the view from the same spot.  Newer buildings have replaced those on the left but the rest of the block on that side are the originals, as is the house on the corner of Vallejo at far right.  The extent of today's transformed Financial District is hinted at by the office high-rise in the distance.


Harold And Maude - Harold's Residence

    After leaving the cemetery Harold drives home in his hearse.

Then ...  He approaches the entrance of his home along a road lined with eucalyptus trees.

... and Now,  this, aptly named, is Eucalyptus Avenue in Hillsborough, an uber-affluent Bay Area suburb south of San Francisco, viewed from the junction with Redington Road (map).  That particular grove of trees above has been taken out but there are still many remaining along this road.  The  tar-patched crack along the pavement, below, appears to be the joint to the original tarmac above.


Then ...  The camera pans right, tracking Harold as he makes a left turn into a long tree-lined driveway leading to his home on the family estate.  This is the Rosecourt estate at 815 Eucalyptus Avenue  (map), built in 1913 for George T. Cameron, the publisher of the San Francisco Chronicle.

... and Now,  the stylish wrought-iron gate is still there but in 1974 a new house was built here where the original driveway used to be.


   The tree-lined driveway (at far left below) leads to his home where he screeches noisily to a halt.


Then ...  Harold's mother and friends stare in astonishment at the sight of the hearse.  Behind them is the stately home.

... and Now,  the 6 bed 7.5 bath Rosecourt mansion is largely unchanged today, but shortly after the movie was filmed the estate's 7 1/2 acres was subdivided into several lots and Rosecourt was readdressed 10 Stacey Court.  The cobblestones, a nostalgic throwback to the past, were sourced from old San Francisco streets.


   This recent aerial view shows how the original estate looks today.  The subdivision added a new cul-de-sac, Stacey Court, off of Redington Road.  Rosecourt Mansion became 10 Stacey Court and its original 815 Eucalyptus Avenue address was assumed by one of the new homes.


The Laughing Policeman - Pontiac Hotel

    The search for Rodney Davis takes Larsen and Larimer to a hotel in the seedy South of Market neighborhood.

Then ...  The camera pans down from the hotel sign as they enter the hotel entrance at 138 6th Street.  In this north-facing view the narrow Minna Street intersects behind them (map).

... and Now,  the sign now advertises that the hotel has moved around the corner on Minna; its original 6th Street entrance has been boarded up for years.


Then ...  inside, they spot the man they are looking for - he takes off with Larimer in pursuit while Larsen doubles back out the front door to cut him off.  This point of view looks in the opposite direction to the image above - the incongruous classically-styled hotel doorway is behind him.

... and Now,  the restaurant with the green awnings next door to the now boarded up entrance, Split Pea Seduction, has assumed the hotel's old 138 6th Street address.


Then ...  Larsen rounds the corner into Minna in time to apprehend Rodney as he darts out a side door.  6th Street crosses down the way.

... and Now,  the door from which Rodney exited has been filled in.  The relocated entrance to the Pontiac Hotel is between the potted plants at 509 Minna.


Then ...  A crowd of locals closes in menacingly while they interrogate Rodney but they manage to take him down to the station only to conclude that the snitch who fingered him had fed them worthless information.

... and Now,  some things have changed, others not.


A note to my readers ...

Some of my blog readers have found (it's browser dependent) that part of the movie list on the left side of the blog was cut off, making it unaccessible.  To solve this the movie list has been changed so that it is accessed from a link called 'View Movies' listed at the very top of the blog ...

By clicking this link the movie list comes up.  Individual movies can then be selected to show their location list ...

 Clicking on 'View Movies' again closes the list ...

If readers have problems with this new design please alert

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