RAFTER ROMANCE (1933)

This rarely seen romantic comedy stars Ginger Rogers just before her first film with Fred Astaire, Flying Down to Rio (1933). Here, she possesses a delicious lightness in her performance as a woman sharing an apartment in 12-hour shifts with a man she’s never seen (Norman Foster). As each begins to resent the other’s bad habits, their meeting and falling in love outside the apartment becomes almost inevitable. As a pre-code film it is filled with risqué bits, but the plot, as suggestive as it seems, was not a code issue as the film was remade under stricter code enforcement as Living on Love (1937). Rafter Romance was one of half a dozen films handed over to former RKO head Merian C. Cooper to settle a lawsuit. He removed the films from circulation (except for licensing them to television in 1955-56). TCM acquired the films in 2006 and created restored prints with the help of the Library of Congress and Brigham Young University. This is one of the few theatrical screenings of RAFTER ROMANCE since its initial circulation in 1933. This 35mm print courtesy of the TCM Collection at UCLA Film & Television Archive. (d. William A. Seiter, 73m, 35mm)

In attendance: LEONARD MALTIN