David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • Hotspur & Argyle's Chris Shepherd honoured at LIA Festival.Chris Shepherd is the London International Animation Festival's special opening night guest.
    • Nexus's White House magicThe clever boffins at Nexus Studios have created an incredible AR experience to say celebrate eight years of the Obamas.
    • Beach promenade.What is turning everyone's heads as they relax on a sunny beach in this ad for Tesco's F & F?
    • Stunted delivery.This extraordinary piece of branded content has stunt performer Damien Walters recreating some of the most famous stunts in movie history.
    • Local heroes.The Co-op puts community spirit at the heart of its Christmas campaign.
    • The first day of ChristmasCadbury have created a festive cadvent calendar (gettit) which will see the brand release a new clip every day.
    • The missionaries.Channel 4's cultural importance has been reinvigorated by its coverage of the Paralympics and it has built on a legacy of inclusiveness at a time when we need the values it espouses more than ever.
    • A heated exchangeJeff Bridges stars in this festive UGG commercial directed by Biscuit’s Jeff Low.
    • Love in translation.This Allegro commercial from director Jesper Ericstam is a terrific reminder of what we'll do for love.
    • Separate channels for the chopThis cheerfully gruesome ad promotes the merging of Canal+ and CanalSat into one big network simply named Canal.
    • Putting in the hours.Thanks to a clever device, this film promoting a NABS initiative which aims to persuade us to make time for our children never descends into schmaltz.
    • High times.Volvo like to think outside the box when it comes to demonstrating their trucks. Ever heard of inland paragliding?


On 7th December (2pm-4pm), DAVID REVIEWS and the APA are putting on a CraftWorks show at The Location Guide's Focus event in Islington.

The event is completely free and will be followed by a drinks reception.

We'll be talking giffgaff with Tom Rainsford; meeting an exciting young director; asking Lee Pavey to introduce some work from 'Outside the Box'; and reuniting some of the people who made Cadbury 'Gorilla'.

To attend, register at Focus's website.

Hotspur & Argyle's Chris Shepherd honoured at LIA Festival.

On Friday 2nd December, Hotspur & Argyle director Chris Shepherd is the London International Animation Festival's opening night guest with his eagerly-anticipated film 'Johnno's Dead' taking centre-stage as it receives its world premiere.

At the time of writing there is a slim possibility of getting hold of a ticket so contact Danny Fleet at Hotspur & Argyle if you're interested in finding out more.


Nexus's White House magic

Not everything goes to plan. When Nexus were asked to devise an augmented reality experience to mark the end of President Obama's eight years in the White House, no one could have anticipated that worries about his successor would completely overshadow the valedictory mood.

With Donald Trump taking residence of the venerable building in mid-January, an extra layer of poignancy has been added to any celebration of the departing President.

Nonetheless, we have to salute the unbelievable ingenuity of the app developed by Nexus and we urge you to take a look at it yourself as nothing we can say will do justice to its cleverness.


Tesco F & F
"That Awkward Moment"
1 December 2016

What is turning everyone's heads as they relax on a sunny beach? It must be something out of this world. The expectation - of course - is that we'll see a woman in the briefest of bikinis or a man flexing his muscles in an irresistible style. But it's neither of these things... it's a family wearing their Christmas jumpers with pride.

It's always fun to see a subversion of a meme and this has been done with considerable panache. Ironically, it looks like it was filmed on a day when a Christmas jumper might have been the best option - we assume all the goose pimples on the other beach dweller were removed in post. Brrr... chilly.

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"The Evolution of Stunts"
2 mins 20s
1 December 2016

This extraordinary piece of branded content has stunt performer Damien Walters recreating some of the most famous stunts in movie history. It's great fun seeing how many you can identify and we're not going to spoil it for you by listing them all... but you could always use the Comments section to see if you can.

Channel 4 and Honda are familiar bedfellows and together they put some really memorable content in the ad breaks. They famously collaborated on an entire live ad break in 2008 - which was probably the most difficult piece of 'event' TV advertising ever attempted - and they are continually looking for ways to push the envelope.

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Co-op Supermarkets
1 December 2016

The Co-op puts community spirit at the heart of its Christmas campaign as we watch the good times roll in for friends, families, and workmates. Smuggler’s Joshua Neale creates an appealing medley of festive moments, from a passionate kiss to revellers enjoying a chilly seasonal swim.

Yet that’s only half the story. We think we know what Christmas is all about, “but what if it could do more?” Suddenly, some decidedly non-Christmassy imagery appears: an urban farm, a sea rescue; a women’s football game. For the Co-op, sticking a few items in our basket can do more good than we ever imagined.

By joining the supermarket’s loyalty scheme, customers can help fund local projects like the ones featured. That means our emergency grocery runs during the holidays and beyond can also aid worthy causes.

It’s a confident reminder of the brand’s altruistic values. Emma Edmondson's laid-back narration is perfectly paced and full of warmth, while the sound design by Grand Central's Culum Simpson is impressively authentic, immersing us in each scenario without missing a beat. Lovely.

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Recent Promos

Capital Cities
3 mins 09s
30 Nov 2016
Remy Cayuela brings 'Vowels' to life by creating a new style of lyric video. With the help of choreographer Denna Thomsen, the track's words were translated into American Sign Language and incorporated into a dance routine. It's a great idea, sassily executed with great camerawork by DP Jeff Bierman - we just wish the song could do it more justice.

"When We Were Young"
4 mins 11s
22 Nov 2016
Folk artist Passenger serenades a pub in this rose-tinged promo for 'When We Were Young'. The track itself is an inoffensive jaunt into yesteryear; but director James Lees and DP Ben Moulden give it some weight with a promo that bathes the pub and its inhabitants in lazy sunlight and a wistful haze. We'll have a pint of nostalgia, please.

Emeli Sandé
"Garden (ft Jay Electronica & Aine Zion)"
4 mins 03s
22 Nov 2016
Rapper Jay Electronica and poet Áine Zion join Emeli Sandé for her latest release, 'Garden'. The attendant promo from Charlie Robins is, fittingly, set in a stately garden complete with tropical glasshouse, and the action moves between the two. The steamy, dreamy lushness of the latter complements the song's vibe... making it a perfect combination.

Ok Go
"The One Moment"
4 mins 13s
24 Nov 2016
Viral wonders Ok Go are back with another compelling, visually complex promo which takes a few watches to fully appreciate. Which won't be a problem, because this has made a social media splash which guarantees you'll see it a few times whatever platforms you use. The video is first shown in its entirety in real time - shot in 4.2 seconds - and then shown in slow motion to accompany 'The One Moment'. The colourful salt bursts, paint splatters, and exploding guitars are visually hypnotic, keeping our attention right to the end of the song.

"Happy When You Go"
3 mins 26s
23 Nov 2016
Banfi's debut track receives a hypnotic promo courtesy of Indy8's Jake Dypka. A girl shows off her hula hoop skills while intermittently vanishing into thin air. It's a clever effect which helps put a new spin on escaping suburban ennui. Meanwhile, the Leytonstone three-piece lace proceedings with jangly guitars and lyrics with discernable bite.

Kate Bush
"...And Dream Of Sheep"
3 mins 41s
21 Nov 2016
It's inevitable that whenever Kate Bush resurfaces in the world of music there's more than a ripple of excitement. And this particular release is given an extra frisson by the promo that comes with it. The song is about someone lost at sea, so for authenticity Bush was filmed singing live in Pinewood Studios' vast water tank, floating in a life jacket.

Robbie Williams
"Love My Life"
3 mins 26s
23 Nov 2016
Robbie Williams just loves being the centre of attention, eh? To be fair to the man, there's no ripping off shirts and/or skin in this promo for 'Love My Life'. He's dressed for winter as a group of black-clad camerawomen record his afternoon stroll. Slickly shot, though there's no escaping the fact the track sounds like any of the popster's past ballads.

Willie J Healey
"Would You Be"
3 mins 47s
22 Nov 2016
Willie J Healey describes his music as a bit "rock'n'stroll" - and he's just as happy to go with the flow on the promos front. When director Finn Keenan wondered if he'd be up for playing "a pathetic, but very likeable, character who dedicated his life to recording the sound of things that don't make sound" he didn't need asking twice.

"Breathing Me In"
4 mins 52s
21 Nov 2016
A pair of lovers get a little hot under the collar in Kristian Young's promo for Koven. Fire becomes a metaphor for individuality and strength when a woman burns her man's back with the intensity of her emotions... and he isn't happy. The story opens with them taking an idyllic trip out into a forest. But as they start to get passionate she literally sears his back with her hand... and they discover she is alight.

Jim James
"Here In Spirit"
4 mins 57s
21 Nov 2016
Jim James - Jesse's musically-inclined brother - flits between town and country in this reflective promo for 'Here In Spirit'. The video champions reconciliation and acceptance regardless of our differences. Butterfly on his shoulder, James reminds us: "If we don't speak out, we can't hear it" - salient advice during these turbulent times.

4 mins 26s
21 Nov 2016
Rapper Buddy may only be 23, but he's already preparing for death. That is, his faith means he's "making my way to heaven while all of my homies been facing the Devil". This promo reflects his outlook: finding the positive in the negative and feeling grateful for the opportunity of life itself; an approach which ensures he makes the most of every day he has.

Ulrich Schnauss
"Love Grows Out Of Thin Air"
5 mins 38s
17 Nov 2016
German electronic musician Ulrich Schnauss creates richly-layered synthscapes which are as strangely uplifting as they are profoundly sad. This track, taken from his latest album, has inspired a promo directed by Sean James Garland about the nature of loss and grief and focuses on a detective mourning the death of his adopted son.

3 mins 21s
17 Nov 2016
Danish popster MØ reunites with director Georgia Hudson for some Balearic escapism. The promo for 'Drum' captures Ibiza at its most picturesque, far removed from club nights and extortionate bottles of water. It's a free-spirited effort as MØ dances on the beach and in a chic abode, proclaiming, "It's your life, it's all yours". Nice location to live it in, too.

Michael Kiwanuka
"One More Night"
3 mins 54s
21 Nov 2016
Director Nez collaborates with the Brooklyn Jumbies - dancers and performers in the African tradition - for this latest release from Michael Kiwanuka. The promo is heavily letterboxed at the start, giving us only a glimpse of the street in which the action is located, before widening to reveal a community literally rising up and standing tall. Upbeat and optimistic.

Frightened Rabbit
"I Wish I Was Sober"
3 mins 37s
16 Nov 2016
A multi-storey car park hosts a crowded intervention in this moving promo for Frightened Rabbit’s ‘I Wish I Was Sober’. A woman finds herself at her lowest ebb, but strength in numbers prevails as she is met by an ever-growing body of helping hands.

Coco Banana
"Earthquaker (Screw Edit)"
2 mins 25s
17 Nov 2016
Who is Coco Banana? The sparse info available only describes them as a female "American songwriter" with no other songs out there that we can see. Her voice has been slowed down on 'Earthquaker' by the Paris-based label Records Collection to create a sound that stops you in your tracks, and Simon Landrein's NSFW animated promo keeps you anchored there.

Maroon 5
"Don't Wanna Know"
6 mins 18s
16 Nov 2016
We love the conceit of David Dobkins' promo for 'Don't Wanna Know' - Maroon 5 as Pokemon Go-style monsters chased by adoring fans - but this contemporary meditation on the nature of fame can't quite pull itself free of the song's banality. Some good comedy cameos, though: the best is the exchange between Vince Vaughan and Adam Levine at the end... sweaty bum cheeks et al.

Emeli Sandé
"Breathing Underwater"
3 mins 50s
15 Nov 2016
This promo for Emeli Sandé's latest song 'Breathing Underwater' from her new album 'Long Live The Angels' features a familiar music video trope - disconnected stories of people at low points in their life, each finding redemption in their own way. Their experiences are intercut with Sandé's emotive performance to camera.

Spring King
4 mins 11s
15 Nov 2016
Put Blind Date in a blender with The Fast Show's Channel 9 and add a little League of Gentlemen. The resulting cocktail would be Jack Whiteley's promo for 'City' by Manchester rockers Spring King. It's part two of a pair - 'Detroit' introduced us to dating show Euro Lover; now Bartek and Penelopete are off to 'enjoy' the sights and sounds of the aforementioned city circa 1990.

Katie Melua
"Perfect World"
4 mins 42s
14 Nov 2016
Yes, yes, we know it's Katie Melua - but these are crazy days we live in. If Trump can be president, Melua can write a lovely song. And she has, in 'Perfect World'. Better still, animators Karni and Saul have created a truly stunning animation to go with it. We defy you to watch this journey through a frozen wilderness without finding a lump in your throat by the end.

Gorgon City
3 mins 25s
14 Nov 2016
Will Robson-Scott's promo for Gorgon City's 'Smile' examines how one family duo gets by in the City of Angels. Mum may not always be around for a bedtime story, but she's there to brush teeth, play around at breakfast, and share some quality time on the sofa. Come sundown, however, life becomes a stage show.

Rituals of Mine
"Ride or Die"
3 mins 26s
11 Nov 2016
Rituals of Mine - formerly known as Sister Crayon - release a love letter to Oakland with this promo for their song Ride or Die. Using no actors and featuring only real people in their own environment, authenticity was essential to the shoot. With moody black and white visuals to match the haunting, breathy vocals, this film paints a picture of a community as diverse as the city itself.

"Find Me (ft Birdy)"
3 mins 24s
11 Nov 2016
You just know Sigma's new release 'Find Me' is going to be massive. Featuring the soaring vocals of Birdy, the 19-year old who's been steadily gaining critical acclaim since her break-out cover of Bon Iver's 'Skinny Love' five years ago, it's a fervent, propulsive dance track with a bonus feature: the promo that comes with it. Millie Bobby Brown from Netflix's 'Stranger Things' gives a standout performance.

Bring Me The Horizon
"Oh No"
5 mins 03s
9 Nov 2016
Isaac Eastgate's promo for 'Oh No' by Bring Me The Horizon is a wild and wacky affair incorporating everything from a hostage scenario to a trumpet-playing clay baby. What's the plot? No idea. But we don't care - the unpredictable twists and turns hold our attention to the end, and you have to admire the way so many elements have been entertainingly squeezed in.

Louisa Johnson
"So Good"
3 mins 10s
7 Nov 2016
The fact that it's a school night isn't going to stop X Factor star Louisa Johnson heading out to raise hell with her mates. Emil Nava creates a mighty slick promo for the singer demonstrating just how full of 'tude she is as she gets behind the wheel of a monster truck and stirs up the local good ole boys at the diner.

Recent Promos

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