Heartbeat: Ginger Rogers as a Pick Pocket

If you haven’t gotten a chance to peruse the classic movies on Amazon Prime, I highly recommend it! Hidden there you will find quite a few gems you’ve never seen before, mainly because they’ve never been reproduced by their home studios. While this is not restoration quality it’s good enough to allow you a glimpse of the olden days.

My favorite studio of days gone by, RKO Radio Pictures, has quite a few classic movies on Amazon Prime that will sweep you off your feet, one of them is Heartbeat starring Adolphe Menjou, Ginger Rogers, and a charming Jean-Pierre Aumont. If you aren’t familiar with the leading frenchman then you obviously missed the American obsession with French actors during this time period, another notable French import was Simone Simon of Girls’ Dormitory fame.


Ginger Rogers plays Arlette, a poor girl who has run away from reform school. Eager for work she happens upon the doorstep of a man who trains pick pockets while offering board and food. Her first job goes horribly awry and she gets caught by the Ambassador (Menjou). The ambassador, trying to catch his wife in an affair with a younger diplomat Pierre de Roche(Aumont), blackmails Arlette into stealing Pierre’s watch in exchange for her freedom. Arlette, disguised as the niece of the baron, sets to dancing and falling in love with Pierre to get the watch.

A series of mishaps, some truth telling and some soul searching try to get these two together throughout the film.

I loved this original storytelling.

And for anyone who is a fan of Ginger’s ageless charm you’ll be interested to know she is 35 in this film, playing the 17 year old whose never been kissed.

Aumont was a surprise in this film. Having never seen him before, I figured he was yet another intriguing foreigner pushed into Hollywood. But no! He has acting skills. Playing his character to perfection you can feel the “should you, shouldn’t you” vibe when it comes to the relationship and further his concerns over his career and reputation if he gives in to the little pick pocket. Just wait until he returns home to find her in the fur bikini on the terrace.

An absolutely charming film. Highly Recommended. Watch Free on Amazon Prime.


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