Reel SF

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

I Remember Mama - Katrin's Graduation Gift

Graduation Day is rapidly approaching for Katrin, doubly important because she is to play Portia in the school production of 'The Merchant Of Venice'.  She diligently memorizes her lines in her bedroom attic where her window view, described in more detail in an earlier post, looks across the Embarcadero to the East Bay.


Then ...  Walking down the street she practices her lines with Christine but she for her part chastises her elder sister for being consumed with the play and dreaming of graduation gifts at a time when the family is struggling to make ends meet.

... and Now,  this street scene was filmed on the east side of the 1200 block of Kearny Street between Green and Vallejo on Telegraph Hill, also seen earlier when Katrin was out shopping with Mama.

... on location ...  here's a snapshot taken as they passed 1236 Kearny while they were filming this scene.   What a great view of the action that resident had!


    They run into two of Katrin's friends in front of a store window where she points out the gift she dearly wants... a dresser set.  "it's got everything, even a hair receiver, and it's genuine celluloid!".  This though was filmed at the Warner Brothers back lot.


Then ...  (Cutting back to a location shot) Christine tells her that she's not going to get it ... she had heard Mama saying she would give Katrin her silver solje (brooch), a family heirloom.  Katrin is mortified... "What would I want with an old thing like that for?"

... and Now,  this was shot on the 500 block of Liberty Street in Eureka Valley, described in an earlier post.  The house at far right both Then and Now (with the green door) is 554 Liberty.


Then ...  Christine accuses her of being selfish and adds... "But you'll devil Mama into giving you the dresser set somehow".  As they approach the junction with Noe Street  (map) they pass an empty lot on the corner.

... and Now,  the modern house that sits on that corner lot today is totally out of character with the neighborhood (how was that allowed to happen?).  Next to it, beautifully maintained, are 513, 517 and 521 Liberty Street.  Note how the entrance stairs on some of these surviving original homes have been reworked to optimize space and improve safety (here's another example).


    Christine was right, Katrin got the dresser set.  But when she tells her (to brother Nels' disapproval) that Mama had to sell her precious solje to pay for it Katrin is shocked and distraught, causing her to perform poorly in the play.


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