Reel SF

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

Portrait In Black (1960)

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The Movie

     Director Michael Gordon recovered from his persona non grata status after Hollywood blacklisted him during the anti-communist hysteria of the 1950s to make the frothy romance-comedy Pillow Talk in 1959 followed by this movie, Portrait In Black, a very different, neo-noir film of murder, suspense and intrigue.   Glossy sets, a fashionista leading lady and San Francisco itself, rendered in glorious color, complement the entertainment.  Based on a stage play, the long-planned move to celluloid was finally realized with the movie's release on July 27, 1960.

The Story

    Sheila (Lana Turner), married to invalid shipping magnate Matthew Cabot (San Francisco's own Lloyd Nolan), is having an affair with Cabot's doctor David Rivera (Anthony Quinn).  Their scheme to kill Cabot is successful and all seems well until they are rattled by a note congratulating them on the murder.  They suspect Cabot's business associate Howard Mason (Richard Basehart) and in desperation conclude he too has to go.  When, following Mason's demise, another similar note arrives, their suspicions turn to the family chauffeur Cobb (Ray Walston).  As they descend into meltdown mode Sheila's stepdaughter (Sandra Dee) realizes their involvement, setting up a climactic final scene.

The Locations

  1. Cabot Shipping Line   Pier 22, The Embarcadero, Rincon Hill  ---  Crocker Building, One Post Street, Financial District
  2. The Cabot Residence   2898 Broadway at Baker Street , Pacific Heights ---  (window view) Marin Headlands, Marin County  ---  (window view) Point Bonita, Marin County
  3. I. Magnin's on Union Square   I. Magnin and Co, Geary Street at Stockton, Union Square
  4. Rivera's Apartment,  2560 Divisadero at Broadway, Pacific Heights
  5. Cabot Gets the Needle, Blake Gets the Shaft   On the bay, east of Telegraph Hill --- (window view) 480 (Embarcadero) freeway
  6. Somebody Out There Knows   Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park
  7. Making Amends   Chinese Pagoda Restaurant, 830 Grant Avenue, Chinatown
  8. Rivera's Office   California Street between Jones and Powell, Nob Hill  ---  (virtual location) Union Street near Montgomery, Telegraph Hill
  9. Fisherman's Wharf   Pier alongside Pier 45, Fisherman's Wharf
  10. Mason's Demise   Baker at Broadway, Pacific Heights
  11. Drama at Devil's Slide   2898 Broadway at Baker Street  ---  Hyde Street at Lombard Street  ---  Highway 1 at Devil's Slide
  12. Haunted By Hippocrates   Union Square  ---  Maiden Lane between Grant and Stockton
  13. Retribution   2898 Broadway at Baker Street

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