San Francisco is a unique U.S. city because it has amazing vistas and is surrounded by wild landscape until it meets the Pacific Ocean. It’s no surprise that SF is the setting of movies and TV shows, the subject of songs and inspiration for writers. It’s a place like no other.
Here we’ve made a list of 7 movies with filming locations in our fair city.
Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 detective film starring Kim Novak and Jimmy Stewart has sweeping views of San Francisco. The backgrounds are so beautiful they sometimes look like paintings. The most notable shots are of the Golden Gate Bridge from Fort Point, Mission Dolores and the Legion of Honor, just south of Baker Beach.
This morbidly sweet movie is a 1970s American favorite. Hal Ashby made use of San Francisco’s fantastic Sutro Baths ruins, located near Land’s End. Another scene features a view of the SF skyline when Harold and Maude look out at the city from the other side of the bay, filmed from the Emeryville Marina.
This was a ‘90s kid’s favorite, and Robin Williams is such an important part of the Bay area that it seems necessary to mention this film. After William’s passing, the house in the film located at 2640 Steiner Street in the Pacific Heights neighborhood was used as a makeshift memorial for the beloved actor and comedian.
Dirty Harry is a crime thriller featuring Clint Eastwood as a cop hunting down a rooftop killer terrorizing the city by the bay. There’s no shortage of SF aerial shots in this Don Siegel classic. Washington Square Park makes an appearance in the film, as well as Saints Peter and Paul Church on Filbert Street.
Eddie Murphy and Nick Nolte star in this action-comedy-thriller from the early ‘80s. While the two work on finding a serial killer on a spree in SF, the Church Street Station makes an appearance.
This is a great film set in SF, with the TransAmerica Pyramid’s construction in the background set as a time reference in the story. SF City Hall was also a filming location for this mystery-thriller.
This cult-classic was mostly shot in LA but was set in San Francisco. In fact, a scene shows character Johnny riding in a streetcar right near our hotel, passing Grace Cathedral. Other shots include our very own California Street! This film has such a following in the Bay Area, check out if it has a midnight show at the Clay Theater while you’re here.
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