The Laughing Policeman - Getting Warmer
Then ... Bus victim Gus Niles' girlfriend's place is on the steep Filbert Street steps on the eastern slope of Telegraph Hill (map). As Jake and Larsen start climbing up from Sansome Street we see, perched atop the sheer cliff at left, the ill-fated apartment building at 22-30 Alta Street which was to become national news 19 years later when it began collapsing down the cliff.
... and Now, the steps haven't changed except for the section in front of the Filbert Landing offices at left that replaced the old repair shop above. At the cliff top the overhanging apartments are gone following condemnation and demolition by the City.
Then ... The stairs make a right and they continue the climb - the old repair shop is down below them.
... and Now
This same section of steps was used by Humphrey Bogart's character when, after face-changing surgery, he climbed to Lauren Bacall's apartment in 1947 in Dark Passage - back then the steps were of more precarious wood construction.
... and again during the suspect's desperate dash home in 1952 in The Sniper. The Gibraltar Warehouse across Sansome from the repair shop was subsequently demolished - its site is now part of the Levi Strauss headquarters.
Then ... They take a breather just below Napier Lane; Jake points to the house alongside, it's the one they are looking for, the first one on the right during the climb.
... and Now, this section is still built of wood with maintenance over the years leading to inevitable changes in the railings. Newer home construction and remodeling are seen on the right side.
Then ... The house has two side-by-side units; they head for the one on the right, number 218.
... and Now, the tree next to the steps has been removed but a little more greenery makes up for it. We see too that the second floor balcony of number 220 on the left has been redone.
Then ... Nobody responds to the knock on the door but no worries, Larsen has it open in seconds.
... and Now, hey, it's still the same door, light switch too!
Then ... Larsen enters a room and stumbles over a dead woman with a needle in her arm. They have found Niles' girlfriend.
... and Now, in the same room today.
Jake looks around; he finds a war-time photo of Gus Niles and recognizes his taller buddy - it's Henry Camerero who happens to be the prime suspect in a two-year old murder case of his who he was never able to nail. The trail is getting warmer ...