L'argent de poche (1976)
In 1975, Francois Truffaut took his camera to the small town of Thiers in central France to shoot the daily lives of a handful of youngsters in their last year of elementary school. They all go through tribes and tribulations of various degrees, from forbidden crushes, through poverty and domestic abuse, to innocent teenage love. It is a sweet, if somewhat contrived film filled with charming, unprofessional actors and seemingly instantaneous situations. The camerawork and mode of storytelling is fascinatingly refreshing, but unfortunately, Truffaut's plan isn't quite as pure and spontaneous as aimed for. The performers at times seem too instructed and bound, but there are a handful of moments in which Truffaut captures magical moments of timeless (childhood situations) and contemporary (mid to late 20th century central European village life) proportions. The film has a delicate grace, despite its transparencies.