7.2/10
4,754
82 user 26 critic

San Francisco (1936)

Passed | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 26 June 1936 (USA)
Trailer
2:09 | Trailer
A Barbary Coast saloonkeeper and a Nob Hill impresario are rivals for the affections of a beautiful singer, both personally and professionally in 1906 San Francisco.

Director:

W.S. Van Dyke (uncredited)

Writers:

Anita Loos (screen play), Robert E. Hopkins (from the story by) (as Robert Hopkins)
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clark Gable ... Blackie Norton
Jeanette MacDonald ... Mary Blake
Spencer Tracy ... Father Tim Mullin
Jack Holt ... Jack Burley
Jessie Ralph ... Mrs. Maisie Burley
Ted Healy ... Mat
Shirley Ross ... Trixie
Margaret Irving ... Della Bailey
Harold Huber ... 'Babe'
Edgar Kennedy ... Sheriff
Al Shean ... Professor
William Ricciardi ... Signor Baldini
Kenneth Harlan ... 'Chick'
Roger Imhof ... 'Alaska'
Charles Judels ... Tony (as Charles Judells)
Learn more

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Storyline

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 <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It started out like any other day! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeanette MacDonald's commercial recording of the title song was not recorded nor released commercially until more than 13 years after the film was made, after the eminently successful 1948 re-release. It was included in an RCA Victor Red Seal album called "Romantic Moments" and marketed simultaneously in 33-1/3 rpm, 45-rpm and 78-rpm editions. See more »

Goofs

The 'highbrow number' sung by Mary Blake while Blackie Norton entertains Jack Burley and Signor Baldini in his box early in the film, is "A Heart That's Free" by Alfred G. Robyn, composed in 1910. See more »

Quotes

Mary Blake: Hello, Della. I'm glad to see you again.
Della Bailey: You won't be for long. I just dropped over to tell you what I think of you. You know, I haven't seen this woman since she walked out on the best man in San Francisco to marry the town's number one rodent.
Jack Burley: I think you better go, Della.
Della Bailey: Oh, no. I've got a few things I want to tell you, too. Now, in case you folks don't follow me, I'll tell you that this mouse here has just had a padlock put on The Paradise and thrown all of Blackie Norton's performers in jail...
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

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 »

Connections

Featured in Movies Are Adventure (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

After the Ball
(1892) (uncredited)
Written by Charles Harris
Played by the band at Blackie's place
See more »

User Reviews

 
Timeless special effects created in 1936 by John Hoffman
27 October 2007 | by mail-4621See all my reviews

John Hoffman (my father) was responsible for the Great Earthquake scene and a number the other montage sequences in the film. A friend of his, the film preservationist David Shepard, tells me the film had already been shot, but the studio execs weren't happy with it. So, they handed it over to the then head of MGM's Montage Department, John Hoffman, to see if he could salvage it. Hoffman rewrote, directed and edited many of the scenes. The result: five Oscar nominations (including 'Best Picture') and one win ('Best Sound') – released in 1936, it preceded the introduction of the Oscar for Special Effects award by a few years.

A few years ago, when the Academy Awards Ceremony featured a review of the greatest disaster films ever made, I was disappointed to note that San Francisco hadn't been included. Still, from reading the reviews posted here, it's great to see how many people still appreciate it today.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 June 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Cidade do Pecado See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,300,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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