If the medium is the message, as Marshall McLuhan wrote 50 years ago, what does “Drone Boning” tell us?
The 3-minute film, a side project of commercial directors Brandon LaGanke and John Carlucci of Brooklyn’s Ghost+Cow Films, features aerial views of the lush California countryside and rocky coastline whilst capturing glimpses here and there of couples faux-boning. It’s like Dronemax.
“It’s an artistic film set to good music,” says Carlucci. Good music with an “Altered States”-style backstory. The soundtrack is “The Kink,” by Minneapolis-based “Fantasy-Core” duo Zach Coulter and Ryan Olsen, who go by the names Taggart & Rosewood (the detectives from “Beverly Hills Cop”). The music was recorded at an opium den-esque 55 beats per minute with the assistance of the psychedelic DMT.
Explains LaGanke, “DMT mimics a neurotransmitter released when you are born and when you die.”
So there’s that.
But why use helicopters for porn?
“I was obsessed with helicopters as a kid. Remember ‘Blue Thunder’?”
Carlucci says he and LaGanke were “paranoid that someone else was [shooting drone porn]” and were delighted when Taggart & Rosewood sent them their album, which they felt was perfect for the scenes they envisioned. Ghost+Cow says they split the approximate $5k production cost with the band.
“Drone Boning” was shot around the Bay Area using an S1000 Octocopter-mounted Panasonic Lumix GH4 4K camera and strategically-girded local talent found on Craigslist.
“We had a hard time casting because a lot of people were at Burning Man,” says LaGanke of the shoot, which the small crew filmed on nights and weekends while in town for a different gig. “It was a passion project for everyone involved.”
But not so passionate that there was fluid transfer. LaGanke says the sex, seen from afar amid the grandeur of Santa Rosa, the Marin Headlands, and “guerilla filming at a famous vineyard” in Sonoma, was “all simulated; the actors were covered up.”
“We have some footage that, if we were to release it, we would be accepted into the porn community,” LaGanke says. The couple next to the blue car, a grandmother and a man whom Carlucci described at the Tribeca Film Festival as a “skeletal Obama,” was actually having sex. That specific footage was not used. Lucky, because the production did not ask for STD tests, nor is the cast credited.
“I get the feeling they did it for the thrill,” says Carlucci.
“Drone Boning” has been seen more than 2 million times in the two weeks it has been out, and the Ghost+Cow team are considering releasing Drone Bone drones in “more epic” locations, perhaps in Europe.
The film is only available on small-screen devices right now. Can they see showing the movie at festivals or IMAX theatres? The 4K captures a lot of stuff…
“I’d love to, but that would be kind of weird,” LaGanke says. “Families would come out. Children would be throwing up.”
I ask if the lack of money shots registers as heresy to the new-to-filmed-nudity pair.
“It wasn’t really a porn, so it doesn’t bother us,” LaGanke says.
“Well, you can see it both ways,” counters Carlucci, delivering an answer that might not fly with Larry Flynt. “Although it didn’t contain money shots, it was special in its own way.”
It is hard to imagine drone porn catching on, what with the eight rotors of an octocopter blowing the popshot all over the couch. But stranger things have happened (like clown porn). But it certainly is beautiful, and the soundtrack makes me want to squirt neurotransmitters all over the place.
Watch “Drone Boning” here.