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directed by George Sidney
USA 19

Opposites attract in this slapstick comedy romance starring Clark Gable and Loretta Young in their first and final pairing since The Call of the Wild (1935). When stevedore-turned-mayor Steve Fisk (Gable) arrives at San Francisco’s national mayors convention, he naturally mistakes Clarissa Standish (Young) for his date, a shapely bubble dancer. Informed she’s actually the no-nonsense mayor of Wenonah, Maine, he invites her to dine at a rowdy nightclub, which lands them both in the clink. So when their arrests make the morning papers and Clarissa finds herself falling for Steve, she’s forced to choose between love and duty when the scandal threatens both of their careers. Costarring TV favorites Raymond Burr (Perry Mason) and Pamela Britton (My Favorite Martian), Key to the City also marked the final screen appearance of Frank Morgan, whose nearly 100-picture career included six with Gable as well as The Wizard of Oz, his best-known film.


Steve Fisk (Clark Gable) is a longshoreman turned mayor of a small California city. Clarissa Standish (Loretta Young) is an upper-class, college-educated woman and mayor of a little town in Maine. While attending a mayors' convention in San Francisco, the two opposites meet and eventually fall in love. But romantic misunderstandings during the convention, and political dealings with Fisk's rival, crooked politician Les Taggart (Raymond Burr), threaten to put a stop to their romance.


Television Premiere: February 2nd, 1950


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DVD Review: Warner Home Video (Warner Archive Collection) - Region 0 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

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Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:40:36

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.72 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio Dolby Digital 1.0 (English)
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Warner Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
 Trailer (2:21)

DVD Release Date: March 12th, 2013
Keep Case

Chapters 10





Key to the City is a pleasant romantic comedy. I'm always interested in seeing Loretta Young and she is as charming and lovely as ever here. It's light and fun but wouldn't have any of its cachet without the two stars, although supporting performances deserve some acknowledgement too. I remain curious about the two leads relationship... the alleged date-rape while making The Call of the Wild (1935) producing a, hushed-up, daughter.

It's standard single-layered MoD (Made-on-Demand) disc but progressive in the original 1.33:1 aspect ratio and looks excellent. This is labeled under the Warner's "Archive Collection" marquee and the image is very impressive with solid contrast and pleasing detail. Black levels are strong and detail surprisingly good. There are in frequent speckles and, frame-specific, marks. Excellent for the SD format. 

The mono sound is decent supporting the breezy score by Bronislau Kaper (Gaslight, The Wild North, Lord Jim, Mutiny on the Bounty, The Swan, Them!, The Naked Spur, Welles' The Stranger) and there are no subtitles offered. The only supplement is a trailer.

I've had this on my shelf for a while and was in the mood. I wasn't expecting anything more than it was and appreciated the light tone and star power. I love the era - fashion and tone. Recommended for the fans of same.   

  - Gary Tooze



DVD Menu


Screen Captures





Clark Gable's character ( Steve Fisk) on the TV says "When I stand here and look at this magnificent body!"

























DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:



Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC


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