There is something about San Francisco's hilly climbs and its dark asymmetrical streets that makes it, for my eyes, the ideal setting for film noir. Drop me into a movie made in this town, and I will almost immediately know where I am.
Not sure why Los Angeles noir writers claim the City of Angels to be THE perfect noir set. Yes, by night, it has been deviously photographed to appear so glamorously sinister. But for shadowy hills, twisted streets, fog and mist, waterfront ambiance and creepy old Victorian apartment houses, I don't think you can top San Francisco.
I used to walk up those steps of Telegraph Hill, below, often. I've told you I stopped walking across the city every week because I was nearly run over twice. Amazing that, after all these years, I have finally considered that, unlike other great U.S. cities, New York and New Orleans, and Chicago, San Francisco's hills truly make it unique. Perhaps, that is the greatest tourist draw.
Some of the hills are so steep, it feels like mountain climbing.
In my last San Francisco posting, I was telling you how the city was once a real town, with working class families, produce and industry, and shipping. So much more gritty than now, which made it infinitely more interesting a place to walk.
The cable cars preserve the city's more authentic charm, except that they, too, so swamped with long lines of takers, come off looking like another Disneyland attraction. Indeed, the city has become a theme park of itself. And, yes, I should stop writing that same rant over and over.
They -- locals and movie makers -- ironically favor the Bay Bridge as background over world famous Golden Gate Bridge.
Really, the story struck me as rather flat and one dimensional. They make the guy out to be a dangerous sex criminal, but we never once seem him intimate with a single woman he pines for. I wonder if they had massage parlors back then?
Going home to no where, in a hotel room. It's a city of loners, more than ever. Even the hotel rooms give off a distinctive worn down used-up end-of-the line San Francisco feel. In the end, our serial killer leaves clues, wanting to be caught, wanting to be apprehended and protected from himself.
And in the end, Franz got me in some abstract amoral way. I've never quite felt so sorry for a lethal predator.
Off axis on dangerous land fill. Experts warn that, despite all good measures taken to retrofit old buildings and hold newer ones accountable to far stricter building codes, a big quake could reap catastrophic devastation on Noir City, North. (L.A, you are South).