David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Virgin Active
"Go There"
30s
17 January 2017
UK Health Clubs / Gyms

There's a stylish mix of animation, CG, and live action in this energetic ad for Virgin Active. An upbeat soundtrack accompanies visuals of people making the most of their gym facilities, while the shots are enhanced by animated extensions of the action. We particularly like the classic video game sound effects and scores on the woman in the yellow shirt - having an HP bar at the gym would be great.

Sainsbury's
"Food Dancing"

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Virgin Active
"Go There"
30s
17 Jan 2017
There's a stylish mix of animation, CG, and live action in this energetic ad for Virgin Active. An upbeat soundtrack accompanies visuals of people making the most of their gym facilities, while the shots are enhanced by animated extensions of the action. We particularly like the classic video game sound effects and scores on the woman in the yellow shirt - having an HP bar at the gym would be great.

DFS
"Winter Sale"
30s
12 Jan 2017
See, not all winter sale ads have to be drab affairs. DFS return to the handstitched factory introduced in their Christmas ad, where Aardman's charming character designs produce some fun moments as we tour the workshop. We especially like the 'no hands!' flourish from one employee. In the end, we see one of their handcrafted sofas in action, so to speak.

Halifax
"Scooby Doo"
60s
9 Jan 2017
Halifax continue raiding the Hanna-Barbera vault by bringing Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Incorporated gang to life. While evading a pesky mummy, Scoob and Shaggy learn about the rewards available to current account customers. We can only assume the unmasked 'mummy' at the end is a dastardly employee of a rival high street bank.

Samsung Gear
"Bungee"
37s
4 Jan 2017
This vertiginous ad from Samsung depicts a bungee jump in reverse. We follow a woman from just below the water’s surface back to her starting position. Looks like a scream, eh? As it turns out, she isn’t actually perched a hundred-odd feet above a river - she’s in her living room wearing a VR headset.

Thomson Holidays
"Moments"
60s
16 Dec 2016
This impressively-shot ad for Thomson Holidays captures the feeling of never wanting your holiday to end. A little girl has all the time in the world as she wanders through a beach resort in dream-like stasis. From exotic birds taking flight to a towel mid-flutter, she explores the little moments we might otherwise miss

Heathrow Airport
"Best Gift of All"
70s
14 Nov 2016
It's fair to say not everyone will embrace Heathrow's Christmas cheer... particularly those living on the site of the airport's planned third runway. The issue will remain divisive into the New Year and beyond, but the airport's festive ad is a cuddly gem. Teddy bears won’t be enough to sway the anti-runway brigade, but their message of bringing families together with ease should travel well.

Currys PC World
"Christmas Lights"
30s
3 Nov 2016
One of two droll Christmas ads from Currys PC World showing how far we’ll go to draw attention to the items on our festive wishlist. In this, a family gathers round as dad prepares to switch on the Christmas lights. He’s delighted with his handiwork, but their excitement quickly fades when they see the lights pointing to next door’s living room - and the LG 4K Oled television within. Oh, and one very confused neighbour into the bargain.

Currys PC World
"Nativity"
30s
3 Nov 2016
After last year’s excellent ‘Spare The Act’ series starring Jeff Goldblum, Currys PC World have some, well, act to follow. However, AMV BBDO and Outsider’s James Rouse have proved themselves to be up to the challenge with two wry ads. We join this school’s nativity as the Three Kings arrive on the scene. We all know how the story goes, right? “The gifts the wise men presented were gold, frankincense, and… oversized silver headphones?”

Ford Mondeo ST-Line
"Elevator"
30s
17 Oct 2016
A man presses against the windows of his local Ford showroom, wondering if he's earned a slick new Mondeo. Through his mind's rewind function, he remembers offering a sweaty cyclist a space in the lift at work. More than enough justification for a new set of wheels, then. Lovely bit of business from the actor as the lift closes - the look of a man who knows what he wants.

Smyths
"If I Were a Toy"
40s
25 Sep 2016
This ad from Smyths, featuring a rewrite of Beyoncé's 'If I Were A Boy,' is all about celebrating the possibility of imagination, soaring where it could have fallen into the trap of trying to play on parents' emotions. 'If I Were A Toy' has clever lyrics that don't feel shoehorned in to fit lines, and the song never gets cheesy.

Aviva
"Older Selves"
60s
1 Oct 2016
This could have been gimmicky in the wrong hands, but adam&eveDDB and Outsider's Max Fisher have crafted an affecting glimpse into the future for Aviva. Thanks to some heavy prosthetics, Adam and Toni sample life after retirement... and then given an enlightening indicator of their respective pensions. When confronted with the figures, both participants are given food for thought.

Scope
"H.I.D.E."
40s
27 Sep 2016
This piece by charity Scope uses humour to educate us about the best approach to adopt when we encounter a disabled person. The acronym H.I.D.E. does not - as the people in the ad initially think - suggest we dive for cover in our fear of blundering. Instead, we should say "hi" as we introduce ourselves; make sure we "don't panic" and make sure we "end the awkward".

National Lottery Euromillions
"Drip"
30s
8 Sep 2016
Do the newly minted receive a pamphlet entitled: "How To Be A Multi-Millionaire"? For example, changing a light bulb's one thing, but how about a priceless chandelier? Like 'first world problems' gone mad, this amusing ad for the National Lottery Euromillions highlights the minor foibles that can accompany a jackpot win.

National Lottery Euromillions
"Parking"
30s
8 Sep 2016
One of two entertaining ads from the National Lottery Euromillions showing that the transition to multi-millionaire can be tricky for some. In this instance, parking a luxury yacht in the marina proves to be far more difficult than nabbing a space at the supermarket car park. Lovely back and forth work from the couple encountering one of the pitfalls of being stinking rich.

Ford Focus ST-Line
"Endurance Date"
30s
7 Sep 2016
A guy who's trying to justify the purchase of a nippy new Ford ST-line casts his mind back to a recent trip to the cinema where he was surrounded by a sea of women sniffling at a chick flick. How magnanimous of him to accompany his (also sniffling) girlfriend. Does he deserve the car? Hell yeah, he tells himself.

De Montfort University
"Dare to Do"
30s
4 Sep 2016
Following his impressive work for the Royal Navy depicting young people seizing the initiative, Outsider's Max Fisher is a shrewd pick behind the camera for this striking ad for De Montfort University. Demonstrating that studying needn't be staid, urgent breathing and kinetic visuals help portray the institution as the dynamic choice to achieve both academic and sporting potential.

McDonald's
"Judo Legend"
30s
30 Aug 2016
This curly-haired gentleman willingly enters a world of pain each and every time his judo instructor asks for a volunteer from the line-up. Sparing his fellow classmates the discomfort of a well-applied arm hold or a face-first rendezvous with the mat, Elliot earns legendary status amongst the West Heath judo community... and one participant knows exactly what kind of chicken sandwich is worthy of his efforts.

Philips
"A Little More Action"
4 mins 08s
18 Aug 2016
An amateur Elvis impersonator is given assistance by the Dutch electrical company as he embarks on a mission to get fit and improve his tribute to his hero in this engaging piece of content. The elephant in the room is Elvis Presley's famous bloatedness which, arguably, offers the protagonist the opportunity for a more accurate show simply by eating freely (and often)... but that wouldn't suit the core message.

Ford Fiesta ST-Line
"Bridesmaid"
30s
17 Aug 2016
This amusing offering from Ford hits the rewind button as a woman ponders whether she deserves to splash out on a new Fiesta. Transported back to a bridesmaid dress fitting while sporting a rictus grin and a Bo Peep-esque frock, she decides she's earned her big purchase.

DFS
"Medal-Winning Design"
30s
2 Aug 2016
The exertion of Team GB is neatly matched by the craftsmanship of DFS's design team in this slick ad for the furniture retailer. After some steely-eyed contributions from both camps (with some lovely goggle work thrown in for good measure), the starter's pistol prompts these athletes and workers to do what they do best. Thanks to the lovely visuals and the pulsing soundtrack, the juxtaposition superbly conveys the brand's patriotic vim.

Cathedral City
"Nachos"
28s
25 Jul 2016
This well-observed ad from Cathedral City highlights another common truth familiar to cheese addicts. This time, a dish of nachos slathered in cheese requires careful analysis by the lad given first dibs at the serving dish. Of course, one does not simply grab the first nacho to hand, and this rule of thumb is conveyed with a lovely bit of business from the cheese-to-nacho ratio expert.

Cathedral City
"Cheese Sauce"
27s
25 Jul 2016
Cathedral City returns to the rule book in order that cheese lovers everywhere know exactly where they stand when it comes to cheddar. This witty execution focuses on a woman facing a cheese sauce quandary: how much is too much? According to David Jason's sage VO, this is a common situation - and as we soon learn, more is definitely always more.

Asda
"Puddles"
30s
18 Jul 2016
The super at the end of this new film for Green Supermarket urges us to "search Asda James Martin" - which sounds like a good idea, although the word 'hunt' might be a better fit and it should probably be followed by the words 'down and kill'. The sequence with the children is sweet but this ad crumbles as soon as Martin is back on script. And it's very hard to get past that music.

Heathrow Airport
"When I Live My Dream"
90s
17 Jul 2016
This charming celebration of Heathrow Airport's first seventy years featuring an early David Bowie song concentrates on a young girl's first experience of Britain's busiest transport hub. Luckily for her, it looks as though she must have arrived a few minutes after a major security alert as she and her family appear to have the place to themselves!

Asda
"Hot Date"
30s
14 Jul 2016
The sooner James Martin is recruited by Top Gear the better. The TV chef may have an amiable persona but this is another very creaky performance. Maybe it'll be taken for authenticity in the same way that Donald Trumps unreconstructed amateurishness is... but it's hard for a seasoned watcher of advertising to look past the awkwardness.

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David Reviews - Lovely Lenzie Ltd, Woodbourne House, Seven Sisters, Lenzie, G66 3AW. Telephone: +44 141 776 7766. Editor: Jason Stone.