Small Change ()

L'argent de poche (original title)
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In the town of Thiers, summer of 1976, teachers and parents give their children skills, love, and attention. A teacher has his first child, a single mother hopes to meet Mr. Right, another... See more »

  • Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations.
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Complete, Cast awaiting verification

Nicole Félix ...
Grégory's mother (as Nicole Felix)
Chantal Mercier ...
Chantal Petit, the Schoolteacher
Jean-François Stévenin ...
Jean-François Richet, the Schoolteacher (as Jean-François Stevenin)
Virginie Thévenet ...
Lydie Richet (as Virginie Thevenet)
Georges Desmouceaux ...
Patrick Desmouceaux (as Geory Desmouceaux)
Tania Torrens ...
Nadine Riffle, hairdresser
René Barnerias ...
Monsieur Desmouceaux, Patrick's father
Philippe Goldmann ...
Julien Leclou
Katy Carayon ...
Sylvie's Mother
Laurent Devlæminck ...
Laurent Riffle
Jean-Marie Carayon ...
Police inspector, Sylvie's father
Annie Chevaldonne ...
Francis Devlaeminck ...
Monsieur Riffle, hairdresser, Laurent's father
Michel Dissart ...
Monsieur Lomay, constable
Michele Heyraud ...
Madame Deluca
Paul Heyraud ...
Monsieur Deluca
Jeanne Lobre ...
Julien's grandmother (as Jane Lobre)
Vincent Touly ...
Claudio De Luca ...
Mathieu Deluca
Franck De Luca ...
Franck Deluca
Bruno de Stabenrath ...
Bruno Rouillard (as Bruno Staab)
Sylvie Grezel ...
Richard Golfier ...
Richard Golfier
Corinne Boucart ...
Eva Truffaut ...
Sebastien Marc ...
Pascale Bruchon ...
Grégory ...
Little Grégory (as Le petit Gregory)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marcel Berbert ...
Headmaster (uncredited)
Yvon Boutina ...
Oscar, adult (uncredited)
Monique Dury ...
Florist (uncredited)
Jean-Francis Gondre ...
Oscar's father (uncredited)
Hélène Jeanbrau ...
Doctor (uncredited)
Christian Lentretien ...
Monsieur Golfier, Richard's father (uncredited)
Jean-Marc Lentretien ...
Studient in classroom (uncredited)
Thi-Loan Nguyen ...
People from Thiers (uncredited)
Christine Pellé ...
Madame Leclou, Julien's mother (uncredited)
Roland Thénot ...
People from Thiers (uncredited)
Martine's Father (uncredited)
Laura Truffaut ...
Madeleine Doinel, Oscar's mother (uncredited)

Directed by

François Truffaut

Written by

François Truffaut ... (original scenario) and
Suzanne Schiffman ... (original scenario)

Produced by

François Truffaut ... producer (uncredited)

Cinematography by

Pierre-William Glenn

Film Editing by

Yann Dedet

Editorial Department

Martine Barraqué ... assistant editor
Jean Gargonne ... assistant editor
Stéphanie Granel ... assistant editor (as Stephanie Granel)
Muriel Zeleny ... assistant editor

Production Design by

Jean-Pierre Kohut-Svelko

Costume Design by

Monique Dury

Makeup Department

Thi-Loan Nguyen ... makeup artist (as Thi-Loan N'Guyen)

Production Management

Marcel Berbert ... production manager
Roland Thénot ... assistant production manager (as Roland Thenot)

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

Alain Maline ... second assistant director
Suzanne Schiffman ... first assistant director

Art Department

Michel Grimaud ... property master
Paolo Rocco Innamorato ... first assistant art director (uncredited)

Sound Department

Michel Brethez ... sound assistant
Michel Laurent ... sound
Jacques Maumont ... sound mixer
Jean-Lionel Etcheverry ... restoration & mastering coordinator (uncredited)

Camera and Electrical Department

Florent Bazin ... assistant camera
Jean-Francis Gondre ... assistant camera
Hélène Jeanbrau ... still photographer
Jean-Claude Vicquery ... assistant camera

Music Department

Raoul Breton ... music publisher
Patrice Mestral ... conductor: orchestra
François Porcile ... musical consultant

Other crew

Jean-Noël Delamarre ... title designer (as Jean-Noel Delamarre)
Daniel Messère ... general manager (as Daniel Messere)
Christine Pellé ... script supervisor
Laura Truffaut ... assistant script supervisor
Crew verified as complete

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Special Effects


Other Companies



Plot Summary

In the town of Thiers, summer of 1976, teachers and parents give their children skills, love, and attention. A teacher has his first child, a single mother hopes to meet Mr. Right, another mom reaches out to Patrick, a motherless lad who is just discovering the opposite sex. Patrick befriends Julien, a new student who lives in poverty with his mother and has a terrible secret. Bruno shows his friends how to chat up girls. Sylvie stages a witty protest against her parents. Brothers give a friend a haircut. A toddler falls from a window and is unhurt. Everybody goes to the cinema. At camp, Martine catches Patrick's eye. A teacher explains: "Life is hard, but it's wonderful." Written by

Plot Keywords
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Additional Details

Also Known As
  • Small Change (World-wide, English title)
  • Pocket Money (World-wide, English title)
  • Small Change (United States)
  • Pocket Money (United Kingdom)
  • La piel dura (Spain)
  • See more »
  • 104 min
Aspect Ratio
Sound Mix
Filming Locations

Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross $449,797

Did You Know?

Trivia (Director Cameo) François Truffaut: Sitting in a cabriolet, wearing his standard blue shirt in the first minute of the film. See more »
Movie Connections Featured in The Best and Worst Films of 1976 (1977). See more »
Soundtracks Les enfants s'ennuient le dimanche See more »
Quotes Jean-François Richet, the Schoolteacher: I know we are all thinking about Julien Leclou. It's in the press... and you've heard your parents talking at home. Before you go on vacation... let's talk about Julien. I don't know much more than you do... but I'll tell you how I feel. First, Julien will be taken care of by Welfare. He will be placed in a family. Wherever he goes, he'll be better off than in his own home... where, in his own words, "he was beaten." His mother shall lose her maternal right. For Julien, it may be quite a few years before he'll know the freedom to come and go as he pleases. Julien's case is so tragic that we cannot help comparing our lives with his. My own childhood was also quite painful. I couldn't wait to grow up. I felt adults had all the rights. They can lead their lives the way they want. An unhappy adult can start again from scratch. But an unhappy child is helpless. He may not know how to put it in words, but he feels that he cannot even contest his parents' right to hurt him. An unloved and battered child feels guilty. That's what's so tragic! Of all mankind's injustices... injustice to children is the most despicable! Life isn't always fair... but we can fight for justice. It's the only way! It's a slow process, but we do move forward. All people with power like to claim they're impervious to threats. But they do give in to pressure! A show of strength is the only way to get results. Adults understand that... and they obtain what they ask for by demonstrating. I want to show that when adults are determined they can improve their lot. But children's rights are totally ignored. Political parties are not concerned with kids like Julien or you. Do you know why? Because children don't vote! If kids had the right to vote they'd have better schools, sports facilities. You'd get them because politicians need your votes. You could come to school an hour later in winter instead of rushing out before daylight. I also want to say, because of my own childhood... I feel kids rate a better deal. That's why I became a schoolteacher. Life isn't easy. You must steel yourselves to face it. I don't mean "hard-boiled." I'm talking about stamina! Some of us who've had a difficult childhood are better equipped for adult life than those who were overprotected with love. It's the law of compensation. Life may be hard, but it's also wonderful. When we're confined to sickbed we can't wait to get out and enjoy life. We sometimes forget how much we really love it. You're about to go on vacation. You will discover new places and make new friends. In September, you'll move up a grade. We'll enroll both boys and girls. Time flies. Before long, you'll have kids of your own. If you love them, they'll love you. If they don't feel you love them they'll transfer their love and tenderness to other people or other things. That's life! Each of us needs to be loved! Well, boys, school is over. Have a happy vacation!
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