David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Hornbach
"No Regrets"
67s
16 March 2017
Germany DIY Retailers

This ad for German DIY retailer Hornbach is barmy - and brilliant. It opens with a man building a house in an idyllic setting (we assume this is a common German leisure activity), who takes an unexpected tumble just as his son arrives.

The boy is struck by terror as his father screams, the entire structure collapsing on top of him in a cascade of wood and bricks which surely sends him to the big DIY store in the sky. The lad starts to weep for his loss - and the years of expensive therapy in his future - but then a very different sound begins...

The twist is a very entertaining example of how we wish we'd react to life's absurdities, and there's a lovely comedy performance from the grief-stricken child. Still, we wish the dark humour had been pushed even further - was anyone else waiting for a sinkhole to swallow them up at the end? Just us, then...

Transport For London
"Build a Picture"

Miles said:

He's about 45 though, right?


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Hornbach
"No Regrets"
67s
16 Mar 2017
This ad for German DIY retailer Hornbach is barmy - and brilliant. It opens with a man building a house in an idyllic setting (we assume this is a common German leisure activity), who takes an unexpected tumble just as his son arrives. The lad starts to weep for his loss, and the years of expensive therapy in his future, but then a very different sound begins...

Volvo
"ABC of Death"
45s
9 Mar 2017
In contrast to the poignancy of their last outing, this film by German upstarts Dorian Lebherz and Daniel Titz is funny from the word go. It recounts the 'ABC of death' as we see people perish in various ways, and we only appreciate how dark some of them are after we've started laughing (D is for Dora... yikes).

EDEKA
"EATKARU / Icarus"
2 mins 35s
17 Feb 2017
German supermarket EDEKA caught the imagination in 2015 with their darkly touching Christmas ad about lonely relatives. Now they’re tackling another, erm, weighty subject: obesity. A boy despairs as his family gorges on an unidentified substance that makes gruel look appetising. When he spots a bird flying away, he's inspired to expand his palate.

Adidas
"Break Free"
1 min 39s
6 Jan 2017
An old man who's not ready to give in to being old just yet is wasting away in a retirement home. Depressed and listless, he remembers his glory days when he catches sight of his old running shoes and makes a decision: he's not going to shuffle off into senility without a fight. This ad for Adidas was created as a student spec film which the brand actually passed on... at least before it went viral.

Das Handwerk
"The Cutter"
2 mins 20s
5 Dec 2016
This superb ad for German trade body Das Handwerk turns hairdressing into a kung fu epic. A young hairdresser realises what he must become to earn Master’s respect: pure salon steel. Under Master’s relentless gaze, the apprentice pushes himself to the limit as he learns true scissor control.

Aldi
"Hunger of The Gods"
85s
10 Nov 2016
This ad for Aldi Germany - launching their first ever joint North-South ad campaign - is, quite frankly, fantastically bonkers. We come in to a huge party being thrown by the pantheon of Greek gods, enjoying such delights as giant hot tubs full of cereal, a hard-drinking skeleton band, and all the spaghetti snake-haired Medusa could ever eat. But alas! The party stops when the plug is pulled by a nearby accountant concerned with the cost of all that hedonism.

Einstök
"Face the Darkness"
60s
3 Nov 2016
Icelandic ale brand Einstök's motto is "Drink. Conquer. Repeat". We doubt they got into the brewing game to provide light refreshment, then. Still, their uncompromising ethos inspires this mini-monster feature from Hunky Dory's Andreas Bruns. A man stands in a desolate landscape... but he isn't alone for long. Unbuttoning his jacket summons a creature of unknown origin, but manifest rage.

Movember Foundation
"Father and Son"
57s
2 Nov 2016
This touching Movember film reminds us of the difference a hairy upper lip can make this month. As two hands rest together on a bed, we see a father-son bond grow over the years. There are playful moments, educational ones, and reassuring ones - but they're always shared. Yet we constantly return to the hands on the bed.

VW
"Laughing Horses"
60s
28 Sep 2016
This is one of those commercials destined to appear in collections called 'the funniest adverts of all time'. It's already caught the imagination of the public, with much positivity on social media. In essence, it's immensely simple: a little VFX tomfoolery has made it appear as though horses are having fits of uncontrollable laughter because of a man's inability to reverse a trailer.

Metro
"Business Day"
60s
26 Sep 2016
Wholesaler Metro champions small businesses in this ad made by Nice Shirt's Stuart Douglas. From opening to closing and beyond, these entrepreneurs work to write their own success stories. Whether it's a café, a bustling restaurant, or a greengrocers, every business needs a supplier it can rely on - and the advertised company believes it can repay its customers' faith with its upcoming special event.

Porsche
"Skateboarders"
55s
3 Aug 2016
Porsche light the way in this commercial featuring two skaters embarking on a downhill roll under cover of night. As the pair slink their way down this woodland road, the imposing shape of a high-performance SUV looms behind them. The vehicle's powerful headlights illuminate the riders who have a few light tricks of their own to enhance the spectacle. Slick nature shots compound a visually accomplished ad.

Mercedes-Benz
"Amazed Again"
90s
25 Jul 2016
A child's journey into adulthood is a time-honoured device, but this Mercedes commercial carves its own space with some accomplished visual storytelling. As this lad gradually sees the world that once sparked his imagination become a smaller place and work overrules play, a spin in the advertised C-Class convertible is enough to make the protagonist look skyward once again.

Toyota
"Heinz"
1 min 37s
18 Jul 2016
As witnessed in EDEKA's controversial Christmas ad, the Germans do like a twist in the tale. The same spirit inspires this amusing commercial for Toyota starring an elderly gentleman called Heinz as he sits alone at a table overflowing with memories. By the time we think we have the ad sussed, there's still a foul-mouthed surprise in store for the patient viewer.

BMW
"Born Electric"
60s
30 Jun 2016
With our minds more relaxed about the principle of electric cars, we're able to focus on more traditional automotive attributes. Into this breach steps a commercial that - at one level - makes very little of the vehicle's electricness. Instead, it folds into everyday life like any other car... and that's very much the point. While delivering a greener, more responsible outcome, this car doesn't look as though it forces us to compromise in any way.

Netto
"Cats"
75s
14 Jun 2016
Netto present a felinophile's dream in this bizarre commercial for the supermarket chain. As soon as a moggy wheels its shopping trolley into view and the opening miaows of the electronic soundtrack register, we're transported to a store where the customer is always, well, cat, and where mice fear to tread. The ad appropriates some of the Internet's most popular cat 'stars' in a progressively surreal series of gags.

Lufthansa
"England Fans"
50s
13 May 2016
An England fan's over-active imagination gets the better of him when told a flight cancellation means he'll be flying with Lufthansa - Germany's national airline. Lederhosen, sausages, penalty shootouts on repeat... enough stereotypes to spark a diplomatic row! Of course, the real airline are far more hospitable as this gently joshing ad demonstrates.

Smart
"Openness"
2 mins 38s
12 May 2016
This clever online film for Smart coyly confronts the idea that we struggle to admit driving one of the vehicles can be enjoyable. It never actually raises this issue but it's surely the subtext of a fascinating competition between various people trying out the car. The driver - in each case - is rigged to some kind of lie detector and his co-pilot puts questions to him or her as they drive.

Loctite Super Glue
"60 Seconds"
60s
24 Apr 2016
This amusing trio of ads from Loctite advises us to keep super glue close by - after all, you never know when you'll get a minute to carry out those niggling repairs. A group therapy session, a passionate date, and a sales forecast meeting all receive a break in the action, allowing those with minor DIY projects to quickly make use of the powerful adhesive. A fun and effective approach.

Fila
"Playground"
60s
12 Apr 2016
Gyms are old news; the city offers a myriad of places to get your sweat on in style according to this vigorous commercial for Fila. Those with energy to burn and a sense of adventure are depicted playing football in neon-bathed swimming pools, skiing by skyscrapers, and turning a warehouse into a tennis court. It's the first piece of work we've seen from this venerable brand, but Riff Raff's Andreas Roth evokes both grit and dynamism with his direction.

Hornbach
"You're Alive"
60s
3 Apr 2016
This lovely commercial for German DIY retailer Hornbach introduces us to a middle-aged man steeling himself for a spot of good old fashioned hole digging. Oh, and the same man standing naked as the day he was born on a mountain ridge. Is he preparing to say goodbye to this cruel, cruel world? Far from it - he's diving back into nature with style.

Caritas
"Keys of Hope"
75s
16 Mar 2016
The plight of Syria's displaced millions is illustrated in this poignant film directed by Knucklehead's Charlie Crane. These refugees articulate the fear and uncertainly that accompanies losing one's home, yet they each hold on to a set of keys as a defiant symbol of hope. It's an effective reminder that for millions of innocent Syrians, the comforting reality of a front door to call their own has been ripped away.

Opel
"Awakening"
80s
8 Mar 2016
Opel tease their presence at this year's Geneva Motor Show with this polished effort directed by Believe Media's Hanna Maria Heidrich. When this chap notices his apartment undergoing some 'Inception'-style anomalies, he ventures downstairs to the garage and finds the Opel GT Concept in mid-air. Once it lands on terra firma, the fun begins for the protagonist.

Loud Against Nazis
"Brainless"
33s
22 Feb 2016
Even zombies have taste as this terrific ad for Loud Against Nazis shows. A member of the undead explores an underpass hoping to get his exposed gnashers on some tasty brains. He then comes across a vandal spray painting a swastika on the wall. Dinner is served? It would be if the bigot had anything between the ears.

Fisherman's Friend
"Flyboard Fishing"
25s
17 Feb 2016
Nets are out and Flyboards are in as this enjoyable display of stunt fishing for Fisherman's Friend demonstrates. This chap prefers to get up close and personal with his catch, and he does so by way of a jetpack/hoverboard hybrid. Powering his air-to-sea assaults is a sea dog with explosive lung power - an attribute helped no end by having Fisherman's Friend on deck.

Johnnie Walker
"Dear Brother"
90s
5 Jan 2016
This impressive-looking film was made on spec by a pair of German students at Filmakademie in Baden-Württemberg. It tenderly tells the story of two brothers who appear to have been reunited on a walk through Scotland. In fact, something else is going on and - if you haven't watched it yet - now's the moment to enjoy it in all its spoiler-free glory.

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