6.4/10
16,588
103 user 30 critic

Pacific Heights (1990)

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A couple work hard to renovate their dream house and become landlords to pay for it. Unfortunately, one of their tenants has plans of his own.

Director:

John Schlesinger

Writer:

Daniel Pyne
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Melanie Griffith ... Patty Palmer
Matthew Modine ... Drake Goodman
Michael Keaton ... Carter Hayes
Mako ... Toshio Watanabe
Nobu McCarthy ... Mira Watanabe
Laurie Metcalf ... Stephanie MacDonald
Carl Lumbly ... Lou Baker
Dorian Harewood ... Dennis Reed
Luca Bercovici ... Greg
Tippi Hedren ... Florence Peters
Sheila McCarthy ... Liz Hamilton
Guy Boyd ... Warning Cop
Jerry Hardin ... Bennett Fidlow
Dan Hedaya ... Loan Officer
James Staley ... District Attorney
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Storyline

A yuppie couple buy a large house in an exclusive San Fransisco neighborhood. They renovate it and plan to rent two apartments on the first floor to cover the costs. A prosperous looking man moves in but is not the ideal tenant. He never pays any rent, drives the other tenants away and systematically ruins the lives of his landlords. Written by Jim Sadur <jsadur@keyflux.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Where terror lives. See more »

Genres:

Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 September 1990 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fremde Schatten See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,912,637, 30 September 1990

Gross USA:

$29,381,956

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$44,926,706
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The home of Melanie Griffith and Matthew Modine is not in Pacific Heights at all, but right across town in San Francisco's Potrero Hill district at the corner of Texas Street and 19th Street. See more »

Goofs

The policeman quotes an entirely non-factual law to Drake about a tenant having rights just because a tenant physically enters a building, even at the time the movie was made. No tenant has any legal right to remain on the premises of a single-family or multiple-family dwelling in any state without payment, and furthermore, because of Carter Hayes destructive acts (e.g., releasing the cockroaches and physical damage to the unit), Drake had more than enough good cause to have Carter forcibly evicted, either by the City of San Francisco police or the San Francisco County sheriff. See more »

Quotes

[initiating sex with Drake]
Patty Palmer: I wish I had spurs.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Melanie Griffith's character Patty Palmer is credited as Patty Parker in the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Bad Blood (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

HANDS ALL OVER
Written by Kim Thayil (as Ken Thayil) and Chris Cornell (as Christopher Cornell)
Performed by Soundgarden
Courtesy of A&M Records, Inc.
Copyright 1989 Loud Love Music (ASCAP)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

underrated film
26 July 2005 | by rycarsonSee all my reviews

I saw this movie again recently, and I have to say that upon reconsideration I think this film is a bit underrated. There are a few deeper sociological issues being explored here that I perceive but are quite subtle in their appearance in the film.

It is a study about the law to some degree, and it has some critical things to say about the ability for one who knows the law and its loopholes and thus exploits others with tools that were originally intended to preserve civil society. Keaton plays a psycho, but one who is highly educated and quite adept at his craft of fraud and deceit.

Further, Modine's character is irrational, befuddled, and ultimately marginalized. I wonder if the director took some liberties with him (as this is a true story, I don't know everything about the real person he portrays) to bring out a few of his close-minded tendencies that may have contributed to the awful situation in which he finds himself. Obviously, there is the closet racism which keeps him from renting to a black man (this is thrown in the viewer's face later and is quite obvious), but there is also the way he perceives a man's role as the solver of problems and his wife as nothing more than a spectator.

That she ends up being the one to calmly and coolly affect a search for and investigate Keaton's character, assaults the traditional notions of a man's role as a protector. Her temperament is ultimately more appropriate for the solution to the problem, and I think it is no accident that the director portrays it in this way.


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