Nary sign of Kardashian in Sex Tape
While it may sound salacious, Keith Black’s Celebrity Sex Tape is actually a rather wholesome affair.
The eight-minute-long short film from 2015, which screens today at The Joint in North Little Rock, finds Black in a desperate attempt to get famous by making a sex tape of himself with a celebrity. The only problem is finding a star pathetic enough to join him for a bit of on-camera coitus.
Filmed during the summer of 2014 in his hometown of Brooklyn, the movie walks the line between cringe-worthy and sweet humor.
“I thought it would be funny to lampoon” the culture of celebrity sex tapes, says Black, who, when not making short films, has spent the past 20 years teaching high school math in Brooklyn. “It was ripe for lampooning and I thought it would be funny to take this nerdy guy and have him follow in the footsteps of Kim Kardashian and enlist a famous co-star to kick-start his career.”
The main character, though, is woefully illequipped for such a foray, which backfires completely and therein lies the humor.
“I also wanted to make it a cautionary tale,” Black says. “No one should ever compromise themselves in their quest for success.”
Despite his bungling and awkwardness, Black’s character, while trying to see if Joan Rivers would co-star with him in his tape, meets Rachel, who may be the girl of his dreams.
Played by Jaclyn Sokol, Rachel, like Keith, is searching for bigger and better things and joins in his wacky scheme to recruit a sex tape celeb.
“We had incredible chemistry,” Black says of working with Sokol. “She’s a great collaborator, very creative. She made the scenes better.”
Her work earned her a best actress nomination from the Fly Film Festival, where the movie was nominated for a best short film award.
The premise and presentation, right down to the jazzy soundtrack, is straight out of the Woody Allen handbook — whiny, neurotic guy finds love even after making all the wrong moves.
The Allen comparison is apt, as Black is an unabashed devotee of his fellow New Yorker. He co-wrote and starred in the 2003 short
Get the Script to Woody Allen, which he says was based on the true story of him actually handing Allen a script and which won best picture at the Long Island International Film Festival.
Also, Sex Tape’s editor is Ron Kalish, who worked as a sound editor on Allen’s 1971 film Bananas and 1973’s
“Woody is probably the biggest influence on me,” says Black, who is a selftaught director and screenwriter.