21 user 6 critic

Rafter Romance (1933)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 1 September 1933 (USA)
A man and a woman share an apartment on a shift basis, never seeing each other; she dislikes him until they actually meet.


(as William Seiter)


(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »


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Complete credited cast:
... Mary
... Jack
... Eckbaum
... Hubbell
... Elise
... Fritzie (as Guinn Williams)
... Julius


A man and a woman share an apartment on a shift basis, never seeing each other; she dislikes him until they actually meet.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1 September 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Adorada Inimiga  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Ellen Corby, as one of the telephone solicitors, can be seen among those gathering around Robert Benchley when he announces the "banquet", and again at the picnic as one of a trio of prize winners. She's the dark haired one with her back to the camera. See more »


When the bell rings indicating the day's end, all the girls immediately hang up their phones. This means they rudely hung up on a customer instead of completing the call. See more »


Jack: Ah, in your icebox, Hubbell!
See more »


Remade as Living on Love (1937) See more »


(1917) (uncredited)
Music by Lee S. Roberts
Lyrics by J. Will Callahan
Sung by a quartet at the picnic, with modified lyrics
See more »

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User Reviews

Hitler comes to Hollywood

A previous IMDb reviewer has stated that 'Rafter Romance' is a 'rip-off' (that's the other reviewer's term) of a German musical called 'Me By Day, You By Night'. Apparently that reviewer is unaware that *both* of these films have borrowed their premise from 'Box and Cox', an English play written by John Maddison Morton in 1847. This play deals with two tradesmen who rent the same room from an unscrupulous landlady, each man believing himself the sole tenant. Because the two men have different work schedules, the ruse is not discovered straight away. This play was once so popular in Britain that 'to Box and Cox it' became a common term for an arrangement in which two people willingly shared accommodations meant for only one person.

The innovation of 'Rafter Romance' (and its predecessor) is that the two tenants are now a man and a woman, who inevitably develop a romance. As is usual in these cornball movies, the guy and the gal detest each other until they fall into each other's arms. Hoo boy.

The landlord in this film is played by George Sidney, a character actor who specialised in playing Jewish stereotypes that were meant to be sympathetic. George Sidney was never as annoying as the odious Harry Green (the Jewish equivalent of Stepin Fetchit) but Sidney's depictions of Jewish characters are still exaggerated and embarrassing to watch.

The single most notable thing about 'Rafter Romance' is that, to my knowledge, this is the earliest Hollywood film to make reference to Hitler and the rise of Nazism. At one point in this movie, landlord Eckbaum (Sidney) discovers his teenage son Julius engaged in chalking swastikas on the walls. Eckbaum and his son are clearly meant to be Jewish. Admittedly, nobody in Hollywood in 1933 had any real idea of what Hitler was planning for the Jews in Europe ... still, it's surprising to see a film depicting a Jewish teenager who thinks that swastikas are a joke. His father is, quite properly, angered by this display of the Nazi symbol.

A very shameful aspect of Hollywood history is the documented fact that all of the major Hollywood studios continued to do business with the Third Reich as late as 1939. Hollywood's leading ladies were medically documented as 'Aryan' so that their films could be distributed in Nazi Germany and Austria. For the same reason, Hollywood's leading men were documented as 'Aryan and uncircumcised'. Except for Darryl Zanuck at Twentieth Century-Fox, all the Hollywood studio executives who colluded in this policy were Jewish ... but clearly had no objection to doing business with Hitler. I'm surprised that 'Rafter Romance' contains a scene depicting swastikas unfavourably, as this sequence would have rendered the film Verboten in Germany and Austria. (Maybe the scene was cut out for German release: it isn't crucial to the movie's plot.) Apart from this, the movie contains nothing notable. Robert Benchley does his usual unfunny befuddled characterisation: I've never understood the appeal of this man. I'll rate 'Rafter Romance' 4 out of 10.

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