Reel SF

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

San Francisco movie locations from classic films

Filtering by Tag: Telegraph Hill

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers - Run For Your Lives!

Matthew, Elizabeth, Jack and Nancy rush from Matthew’s Telegraph Hill home pursued by a horde of pod people. In desperation they flee down the Filbert Steps towards the Embarcadero.

Then … Through the stairway we see them run towards us along the side of a house and around past the front entrance.

and Now, this is 32 Napier Lane at the far end of a narrow lane that tees off the Filbert Steps (map). The house has since seen several changes; those stairs leading up to the second floor balcony have been removed and the front entrance has been modified. The door on No. 28 to the right though is the same one, as evidenced by the unchanged door handle.

14 - pursuit 1 now.jpg
 

Then … They dash on, passing a brightly lit window.

and Now, this is the window of 8 Napier Lane. Ahead, number 32 faces us at the end of the alley.

 

Then … Napier Lane tees in to the Filbert Steps from the left; from there they charge on down the steps. Note both the official street sign and a hand-painted one.

and Now, the same junction today. The city’s sign with the block number is still there and what could be the original hand-painted sign at left has a more recent one below it.

 

Then … They finally descend the lower part of the steps leading to the flats east of Telegraph Hill.

and Now, the view is from Filbert Street at Sansome (map). The steep steps test the fitness of a steady stream of visitors and locals every day.

 

Those same lower steps were also seen in the 1947 movie Dark Passage when hecklers gave Humphrey Bogart a hard time as he struggled up them. Back then the steps were made of wood, far more precarious, and the heavily quarried rock face was only beginning to sprout a covering of foliage.

 

And in 1973 the movie The Laughing Policeman included a view from the same spot as well as other locations on the Filbert Steps. (Erosion of the rock face eventually prompted the City to condemn and subsequently demolish those apartments overhanging the hill).

 

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers - Pods In The Garden

Then … That evening Elizabeth, Jack and Nancy return to Matthew’s house at 1227 Montgomery Street, described earlier here and here. By now they fear the worst, knowing the situation is deadly serious with people all around them having been, and others continuing to be, replaced by look-alike aliens.

… and Now, here’s that same room today. The door ahead accesses the patio overlooking Montgomery Street; the door on the left wall leads into a bedroom that was also used in the movie (as we shall see next).

 

Then … Even though they suspect that the bodysnatching happens while the victim sleeps, one by one they drift off.

… and Now, the same bedroom today. The bookshelves in the movie shot, above, were against the picture wall below. Its window too looks out to Montgomery Street.

 

Matthew falls asleep in the garden, unaware of an enormous organic pod near his chair.

Before our startled eyes we watch the pod open up at one end, disgorging a slimy fetus-like creature that rapidly grows into a facsimile of Matthew; the clone is about to replace him.

 

Then … But that’s not all; other pods are ‘birthing’ around him and we realize that Elizabeth and the Bellicecs too are very close to becoming pod people.

… and Now, in the garden today you won’t find any trace of the pods.

 

Then … But, phhew … just in time Nancy wakes up and screams at the others to do the same. From the bedroom window (the one in the fifth photo above) they see a mob of pod people descending on them, intent on finishing off the foiled conversion.

… and Now, in this recent peek from the bedroom we see that one of the houses across Montgomery has since been rebuilt.

 

In classic gothic horror-movie style the pod people, emitting other-worldly mutant shrieks, pursue them as they flee the house.

 

Invasion Of The Body Snatchers - Kibner, Revealed

Then … They convene back at Matthew’s place where Kibner tries to make sense of what they experienced at the Mud Baths.

… and Now, the matching photo shows how this living room looks today (its location, 1227 Montgomery Street, was described in an earlier post).

 

Then … Nerves are frayed - Nancy clings onto Jack when he gets testy with Kibner (who, unlike the others, has not seen the creatures) for not accepting that they are real and intent on replacing them.

… and Now, the door behind them leads out to the patio overlooking Montgomery Street .

 

Then … Kibner leaves the house, exiting via stairs leading down from the patio.

… and Now, the stairs are still there but hidden behind a latticed wall and an entrance doorway has been added next to the garage doors.

 

Then … He walks towards his car, parked at far left just inside a narrow alley.

… and Now, the alley is Castle Street where it joins a very steep block of Union Street (at the red marker on this map, while the blue marker shows Matthew’s place).

 

When he gets into his car we recognize next to him Elizabeth’s partner Geoffrey. Knowing that he has been replaced, our worst fears are confirmed - Kibner is one of them!

 

Play It Again, Sam - Launderette

Then ...  in voiceover, Allan continues his pejorative lament while walking up the hill to his neighborhood launderette.

... and Now,  Near Coit Tower, this is Grant Avenue on Telegraph Hill looking south towards Filbert Street.  He is just passing 1653 Grant, approaching  the corner at Greenwich (map).  The awning above the doorway is still there and the window has since added security bars.

 

Then ... He muses on while doing his laundry.

    Back then there was a launderette at 501 Greenwich Street on the corner with Grant, listed below in the 1972 city directory (an earlier directory named it as the G & G Self-Service Laundry).  The exterior wasn't shown in the movie but it's reasonable to assume, since the camera crew and actor were already there for the exterior shot, that this is where this brief launderette interior scene was filmed.

... and Now,  501 Greenwich today is a rentable shared workspace office for professionals, a concept that didn't exist 40+ years ago.  Workstations have replaced washers and dryers.

... and Now,  this exterior  view of the launderette site shows, a few steps down the hill at far left, the door with the awning that Allan passed by in the image at top of this post.

 

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