I found ‘In Love and War’ from 1958 to be a very enjoyable romance during a war movie. Set toward the end of World War Two, the plot concerns three Marine buddies, Robert Wagner, Jeffrey Hunter, and Bradford Dillman on shore leave in San Francisco before going overseas for fighting in the Pacific. Their three love interests are Hope Lang, unmarried and pregnant with Jeff Hunter’s child, Sheree North, Robert Wagner’s girl, who isn’t too sure about Wagner, seeing as how he’s a drunk and possibly a coward, (girls can be so particular sometimes) and Dillman’s squeeze, Dana Wynter, who’s not only an alcoholic as well, but obviously a slut! Dillman’s not too sure about their future either. The war scenes are action-packed and realistic, although nothing like the drama they’ll face on shore leave. Just kidding, the island fighting scenes are very well done. (Thumbnail images)
The film is presented in Cinemascope, so the characters are slightly elongated during the opening credits.
The three buddies enter San Francisco on a ferryboat from Oakland.
The credits fade out as they approach the Ferry Building.
As the ferryboat docks, the audience is told it’s 1944, although the island fighting episode shows film that looks like it was shot during the Battle of Tarawa, which was in November of 1943.
This was the most interesting San Francisco location in the movie. Robert Wagner pulls up to the home of his mother at Connecticut Street near 20th on Potrero Hill.
The house on the left is where his mother lives. She’s remarried to a sarcastic jerk who doesn’t like Wagner. I was able to meet the folks who live in the house on the right, and they were surprised to learn that their house is shown a number of times in the film. Tom and Robin told me that the house has been in their family for generations, and they had undoubtedly had another generation of their family members watching the film shooting.
Bob hesitates before going in. The Catholic Church, St. Teresa of Avila, is in the background at Connecticut and 19th Streets.
As a nun with a group of children pass by on their way to the church, Wagner decides that he’s not ready to go see mama yet.
He decides to stop by for several quick ones at Moran’s Bar and Grill before going home.
The building that Moran’s was in, on the northeast corner of 20th and Connecticut Streets, is still there.
When he comes out, I thought there might be a rumble, especially since one of those punks has a skull and cross bones on his jacket, but there’s no trouble, Hey, don’t mess with a Marine, even a cowardly one! (You just know that later on in the movie Robert’s going to come through when the poop hits the stoop) Fortified with necessary medicine, Wagner goes in to visit his mother, but it turns out just as awkward as he imagined it would.
A cable car heads up California Street on Nob Hill at sunrise on the last day of shore leave for the three Marines, and the film includes the obligatory view from the Top of the Mark. Other locations in the movie that I wasn’t able to include are the Hoover Tower in Palo Alto, Monterey and Carmel.