Keep The Change

Keep The Change

16th Post Challenge of 31


What a brilliant low-budget film directed by Rachel Israel who insisted on using actors with autism.


At first I couldn’t believe the acting, how authentic both David (Brandon Polansky) and Sarah (Samantha Elisofon) appeared and then I looked them up. Polansky is Israel’s long-time friend who has autism and Samantha also has it, and they both worked so well together, as though they weren’t acting, simply expertly displaying difficulties with social interaction and communication. Simply a breath of fresh air!


When aspiring filmmaker David is mandated by a judge to attend a social program at the Jewish Community Center, he is sure of one thing: he doesn’t belong there. But when he’s assigned to visit the Brooklyn Bridge with the vivacious Sarah, sparks fly and his convictions are tested. Their budding relationship must weather Sarah’s romantic past, David’s judgmental mother, and their own pre-conceptions of what love is supposed to look like.


“Authentic casting was a huge controlling factor in how the film came out,” Israel said. “I’m not an expert on autism, so my way into the story was knowing this cast and keeping them involved from the beginning. I didn’t trust myself to go off and write something without the involvement of the cast. I don’t think it would have been good or felt real.”


Empathy goes a long way in this movie!

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