Licking Stick was shot on Vision Stock Kodak 16mm on a CP-16R. I could only afford two rolls of film because my financial aid had not come in. I got a 1 for 2 ratio of footage used-shot. Not bad, eh? I don't feel apologetic at all about the hair in the gate either. I feel very "Ed Wood" about this. That's a wrap. Next. I later did get my financial aid and I have a 16 mm release print, Beta SP from a low contrast print, three-quarter inch tape and VHS. The whole thing runs 4 minutes and cost me about $2500. I also distributed on VHS about 500 copies of this thing. My good friend Alex made a rocking video-cover. I even had stickers for the tape labels! I love my movie. I still watch it. Now you can watch the movie too as a DivX avi file.
Licking Stick is available for rent from Vulcan Video in Austin. They even ran an add for it in the Austin Chronicle! Thanks! The video is also available from Premiere and Forbidden in Dallas.
The main reason to pull this whole stunt of a film was so that I could shoot Patrick streaking the drag in Austin with a gold pistol. Dangerous, I know, but Patrick wanted to. Then my crew mutinied and wouldn't even bring the equipment out to do it. I was like, "okay fine... we'll do it as a pick-up later." I never got the chance. Just look at my beautiful storyboards.
Licking Stick is a film that had the best intentions. I wanted to do a chase-scene action short film where the characters spoke Japanese and had English subtitles. Then I found out how much it costs to get subtitles burned into a film print. A lot. So I decided to write in English on the walls what the charcters were saying. In order to do that I spent a lot of time covering the walls of my apartment in paper.
I had planned this whole event rather well. I had a packet given to everyone who worked on the film that had a drawn-map with contact numbers, floorplans with marked shot locations. And also the storyboards with dialogue (link above) both in English and Japanese.
I originally had Patrick killing Junichiro anyway after they laugh about the nakedness. But alas, Jun only had one good suit and I couldn't splash blood on it -also I had to tone down the fight scenes so that Jun's suit wouldn't get torn up. I had planned to maybe cut to black and then dub in the sound of a gunshot, but I never got around to it, and I even decided that no killing was okay. Needless to say: the knife never entered the actual filming.
I also knew that modern film labs suck at pulling negro skin tone out of Kodak film~ they always time it far too blue. I tried to help myself out by putting GOLD wallpaper/wrapping paper and butcher paper up on the walls. Regardless, Foto-Kem did a terrible job. They turned it all blue anyway. I do still have workprints from Yale Labs that are timed correctly, so I can prove that I had it right!
Lastly, I sort of hung myself by planning more on the storyboards than on the script. I wanted to practice "visual storytelling," which is why the script is so spare. This is cool unless you don't get your visuals the way you want. Next time I will make sure to use a bouncing ball for my idiot audience who are too stupid to read the writing on the wall. What's especially funny is that the Japanese I've showed this to, totally "get it." I don't have to explain what a severed finger means.
This is the only picture I have of Mina. It was used for a prop during the opening title sequence, so that I could skip explaining,"there's this black army guy who broke up with his Japanese girlfriend..." I put the picture in a frame, busted the glass, threw it in a garbage can and put an empty beer bottle next to it.
In Summary, I tell you, "This is the GREATEST STUDENT FILM EVER MADE!" I will apologize to no one! To everyone who gave me a bunch of crap~ Thanks for grading me as strictly as a big-budget feature even though I made this with little financial aid. Fooled you!
CAST + CREW:
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B A C K to the I N D E X
1. INT. - NIGHT: An Apartment. Messy, colorful bachelor pad. POV of "breaking and entering" assailants. Japanese assassins: JUN and BAD GUY. Shades, black suits, bearing firearms. POV comes to running shower- nears curtain. From inside is PATRICK singing Sakamoto Kyu's "Sukiyaki."
Patrick senses trouble. Reaches down in shower for knife. plunges through shower curtain at bad guy. Stab. Punch. Throughout the rest of the story, Patrick will remain NAKED.
2. EXT. STREETS - NIGHT: Jun hits the street. Medium shot of his running. Around corners.
Medium then Long shot of nude Patrick giving chase. He has the Golden 9mm that he pulled out the hands of Bad Guy. He is really booking. Zoom pop shot of full frontal nude Patrick running down crowded sidewalk and then into street.
The chase continues on.
3. EXT. BUILDING - NIGHT: Phone Booth. Jun ducks in and calls frantically. He's huffing and puffing. Looking over his shoulder.
Patrick rounds the corner and levels the 9mm at Jun. Jun doesn't look around.
Patrick and Jun are both laughing. Patrick turns and walks away. Jun is still standing in the phone booth and laughing, then finally walks away. The camera stays on the phone booth.
4. INT. APT - NIGHT: MICHIKO has entered the apartment and the camera follows her from behind into the apt where the door has been left open. There are dead guys on the floor. She nears the still-running shower and then turns back. When she does this the camera track repeats only this time we are following Patrick into the apartment. He nears her. They hug. The camera spins around and we see that Patrick has severed his Pinky finger (the form of apology for Yakuza violations).
© 1997, 2000 J.R. Kerr
If you don't have Japanese language support, you can download it for free with Microsoft Windows Update for Internet Explorer. If you are using Mac, Netscape, NJWinstar, or somesuch...you need InterTran because your software sucks.