When a death row prisoner tells him he wouldn't have led a life of crime if only he had had one friend as a child, Father Edward Flanagan decides to do something about. An advocate of child... See full summary »
A newspaper man, his ignored fiancée, and his former employee, a down on his luck reporter, hatch an elaborate scheme to turn a false news story into the truth in order to prevent a high-society woman from suing for libel.
Mary Blake arrives at Blackie Norton's Paradise gambling hall and beer garden looking for work as a singer. Blackie embarrasses her by asking to see her legs, but does hire her. She faints from hunger. Nob Hill Socialite Jack Burley and Maestro Baldini of the Tivoli Opera House see her singing and offer her a chance to do opera, but Blackie has her under a two-year contract which she sorrowfully stands by. Later, when he makes up posters featuring Mary in tights, she does leave for the Tivoli. Blackie gets an injunction against Burley, but knocks out the process server when he hears Mary's performance as Marguerite in "Faust". She asks her to marry him and she agrees to go back to the Paradise as his kind of singer, but Blackie's childhood chum Father Tim intervenes. After Blackie slugs the priest, Mary leaves. She is soon the star of the Tivoli and Blackie's place is closed down. She sings a rousing "San Francisco" on behalf of the Paradise at the annual "Chicken Ball" and wins the ...Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Clark Gable did not want to make the film but was at the mercy of MGM studio head Louis B. Mayer, who had just paid off one of Gable's numerous paramours. See more »
When Blackie is looking at the facade of a building crumbling, you can quickly see the giant hand of an FX technician pushing the facade away from the miniature building at the top right. See more »
opening title card:
San Francisco - guardian of the Golden Gate - stands today a queen among sea-ports - industrious, mature, respectable. But perhaps she dreams of the queen and city she was - - splendid and sensuous, vulgar and magnificent - that perished suddenly with a cry still heard in the hearts of those who knew her, at exactly / Five-thirteen a.m. / April 18, 1906
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After initial premiere, the manager of the Paramount Theater in San Francisco added to the downbeat ending a few shots showing the Golden Gate Bridge being built. Seeing the positive public reaction, MGM decided to have the sequence added to all other prints in release. See more »
San Francisco, like so many other films from this era, just reminds me again how movies today have lost the art of the build-up. They just hit you over the head with mind-numbing action from frame one. Hollywood(and audiences of today) would do well to watch classics like "San Francisco", where story takes precedence over special effects and when the effects do come, they are in service to the story. And they mean so much more and have so much more impact when held back until the last possible moment. Why can't we allow ourselves to be immersed in the story? Or are we just too impatient for it now?
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