David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • Sibling rivalry.B & Q's spin-the-bottle approach to appointing advertising agencies has made Leo Burnett the latest custodian.
    • Motherin' succotash!Th latest instalment in VCCP's campaign for Nationwide featuring young poets is a really moving piece of work.
    • Milton Keynes Syndrome.There's a very strong idea behind this irreverent commercial for car rental company Sixt and it grabs your attention with both hands before nutting you in the face with it.
    • Houseboat.We're going to forgive this its talkative voiceover explaining every little thing because it can't have been included on the broadcast commercial as it was made for the French market.
    • Full-throttle fibre.Sometimes more is more, and Virgin Media prove it with this full-throttle commercial.
    • Joakim Reveman joins Another Film Company.Swedish-born director Joakim Reveman has joined Another Film Company for UK representation.
    • By the power of GrayskullSkeletor saved with moneysupermarket.com, and now he feels epic.
    • All together now.This 30" profile of England midfielder James Blackwell shines a light on the FA's support of cerebral palsy football.
    • Fruit salad.If you're a little rusty on the Big Bang theory (no, not the sitcom), then let frozen smoothie brand Dole bring you up to speed.
    • Just the ticketMcDonald's annual Monopoly ad returns - this time with a scientific twist.
    • Scrubbing brush bluesSpecsavers's long-running campaign has rarely focused on children's glasses, so this latest entry is a welcome diversion.

CRAFTWORKS

Wednesday, 26th April.
Betwen 2.30pm and 4.30pm.

The LSE, Sheffield Street, Holborn, London, WC2.

Tickets: £20 plus VAT.

● How We Made... McDonald's McCafe.

● plus much more.

TICKETS AND DETAILS HERE.


B & Q
"New Brothers"
60s
23 March 2017

B & Q's spin-the-bottle approach to appointing advertising agencies has made Leo Burnett the latest custodian and this film is the first TV work this new relationship has produced. It's a modern take on sibling rivalry as two boys roughly the same age are thrown together by the coming together of their parents.

Rather than make one the villain and the other the victim, the script apportions blame equally. This even-handed approach makes it slightly harder to 'get it' but it underlines the authenticity and - as you might expect if you've seen his feature films - Dexter Fletcher draws ace performances from his young actors.

It's a good conceit and should give B & Q a decent boost in the run-up to the Easter holiday which famously provides them with their busiest period. Let's hope they've gained the courage to run a sustained campaign rather than steering away from quality executions towards orange-overalled announcements at the earliest opportunity.

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Nationwide
"Mother's Day"
2 mins
26 March 2017

Th latest instalment in VCCP's campaign for Nationwide featuring young poets is a really moving piece of work. Filmed just twenty-four hours before it was broadcast, it has Laurie Ogden articulating the feelings of Gavin - a young man from Belfast - in a specially composed poem for mothers day.

The poem is called 'Hands' and describes the incredible gratitude Gavin feels for the support he's been given by his mum, even as they coped with terrible loss. Ogden's words have a profound impact on Gavin's mum as her uncertainty makes way for an al-out assault on her ability to hold it together.

With little time to edit what they captured, the team behind this must have been grateful that all the emotionality of the poem is etched upon mum's face. At the heart of this film, the camera holds its gaze on her for more than ninety seconds. It's a quite remarkable sequence and provides a full reward for a risky endeavour.

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Sixt
"The Cult"
30s
26 March 2017

There's a very strong idea behind this irreverent commercial for car rental company Sixt and it grabs your attention with both hands before nutting you in the face with it.

A funny script from Grey London gave the directorial team an awful lot to work with and they largely deliver: Keith and his new wife are on the money but mum and dad are a tad stilted. We only draw attention to this slight gap between what it is and what it might have been because we rate the script so highly.

Nonetheless, it's a super way to introduce a special offer and it genuinely arouses our interest to learn that a BMW can be rented so inexpensively... so, mission accomplished.

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Leroy Merlin
"Life's Adventure"
1 min 51s
23 March 2017

We're going to forgive this its talkative voiceover explaining every little thing because it can't have been included on the broadcast commercial as it was made for the French market. Besides, the rest of it is really rather good. A couple sets sail through adult life when they purchase a cliff-side house and their journey is rendered into an impressive metaphor through some convincing VFX which redefines the notion of a house boat.

A pastel version of Rob Stewart's 'Sailing' (already pastel enough for most) adds to the sense of epic sprawl as the couple work their way through the predictable stages of a life well-lived with Leroy Merlin standing by them all the way.

As is often the way in the financial services sector, Its grandiosity works in its favour because - to borrow a phrase - it's reassuringly expensive.

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Virgin Media
"Non-Stop Entertainment"
90s
23 March 2017

Sometimes more is more, and Virgin Media prove it with this full-throttle commercial. A stampede of cinematic archetypes race against one another in a high-tech tunnel; Supermen, cowgirls, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are all along for the ride. We don’t fancy the Prohibition gangsters’ chances, though - they’ve got a right Muppet at the wheel.

Meanwhile, Virgin’s spirit animal, Usain Bolt, swaps his running shoes for a souped-up roadster. Not for the first time, he’s the man to beat.

Film buffs will enjoy the visual references laced throughout, including the clown mask worn by Heath Ledger’s Joker and a Mad Max-style deathmobile. It’s a genre mash-up with extra juice.

Rogue’s Sam Brown ensures everything brims with energy and a playful sensibility. And when the racing action threatens to overwhelm, the ad shifts gear with a fun domestic denouement.

For those who such demand speed and variety from their broadband package, Virgin comes across as the dynamic option.

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QUICK SEARCH

Five Star Work

Nationwide
"Mother's Day"
2 mins
26 Mar 2017
Th latest instalment in VCCP's campaign for Nationwide featuring young poets is a really moving piece of work. Filmed just twenty-four hours before it was broadcast, it has Laurie Ogden articulating the feelings of Gavin - a young man from Belfast - in a specially composed poem for mothers day.

Sixt
"The Cult"
30s
26 Mar 2017
There's a very strong idea behind this irreverent commercial for car rental company Sixt and it grabs your attention with both hands before nutting you in the face with it. A funny script from Grey London gave the directorial team an awful lot to work with and they largely deliver: Keith and his new wife are on the money but mum and dad are a tad stilted.

Virgin Media
"Non-Stop Entertainment"
90s
23 Mar 2017
Sometimes more is more, and Virgin Media prove it with this full-throttle commercial. A stampede of cinematic archetypes race against one another in a high-tech tunnel; Supermen, cowgirls, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are all along for the ride. We don’t fancy the Prohibition gangsters’ chances, though - they’ve got a right Muppet at the wheel.

moneysupermarket.com
"Skeletor"
60s
23 Mar 2017
Skeletor saved with moneysupermarket.com, and now he feels epic. So epic, in fact, that he's ready to renounce a life of universe-conquering and dance through the streets to Irene Cara's 'Fame'. The villain quickly wins the town over with his hip-thrusting moves... which we can't quite imagine Frank Langella busting out.

Berocca
"Panjabi MC"
30s
20 Mar 2017
Berocca aim to energise the nation with this entertaining ad for their fizzy yellow vitamin tablets. Far from being just a hangover cure, the brand want you to know that the drink can give you bags of energy and all the get-up and go you need. Roccy the chameleon embodies this vitamin-fuelled nugget of joie de vivre as he struts his stuff deep in the jungle.

Bulmers
"Percentages"
60s
17 Mar 2017
Bulmers Ireland show us a scene with a twist in this energetic ad. A pulsing soundtrack accompanies what looks like a house party only the cool kids are invited to, but appearances can be deceiving... Soon the scene is annotated with percentages which make witty observations about what's really going on with the partygoers.

KFC
"Irish Chicken"
74s
16 Mar 2017
Randy O'Brien is back to introduce KFC's O'Sanders Feast just in time for St Paddy's Day - and yes, it does include potatoes. In one of BBH's final pieces of work for the brand, Randy attempts to make a '200%' Irish meal through a montage of stereotypes sure to make anyone of Irish descent chuckle: huge families, rain, and, of course, leprechauns.

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...

Sky Sports
"No More One Horse Race"
45s
16 Mar 2017
Nico Rosberg’s retirement following his 2016 title victory left many Formula One fans shocked - and presumably left his closest rivals delighted. Pole position is up for grabs, yet this beautifully shot Sky Sports promo draws from a different track sport. While there isn’t a car in sight, there’s plenty of horsepower.

IKEA
"Rug"
45s
15 Mar 2017
Jonny & Will have good form when it comes to Ikea ads. Having helped bring Dougal Wilson’s tale of migrating t-shirts to life, the pair assume directing duties in this charming Aussie commercial. When the alarm goes off, an especially hirsute hand reaches over. Turns out it’s a sheepskin rug - or Ludde, to give its proper Ikea delineation.

James Wellbeloved
"Mega City"
90s
10 Mar 2017
Amazon recently showed you can’t go wrong with a busker and his dog. Pet food brand James Wellbeloved take this notion to heart with this beautifully animated commercial. A young chap braves an endless downpour to save for better times ahead. Alas, generosity is hard to come by in this grim metropolis. As faceless commuters trudge by, the lad manages a few pennies each night. Still, every penny counts.

Sun Life
"Life After 50"
60s
9 Mar 2017
Over fifty equals over the hill? Not if Sun Life has anything to do with it. Long associated with the likes of Michael Parkinson offering free Parker pens “just for enquiring”, the insurer flips the script in this all-action commercial. The entertaining script encourages growing old disgracefully with some well-staged beats.

Seat
"Race Car"
90s
10 Mar 2017
This commercial represents a massive improvement for a brand whose previous advertising has been so lacking in ambition it suggested the car's manufacturers didn't have any confidence in it. Gone are the hoary clichés of family life - instead we're given an emotional glimpse of the car's inner life. The vehicle in question is a racing car and as it's removed from storage every day to see if it can improve on yesterday's times, it yearns for a more fulfilling life on the open road.

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).

Volvo
"Human Made"
90s
8 Mar 2017
This cultured Volvo commercial is touchy-feely in the best possible way. The carmaker claims it’s the human touch that inspires them. Instead of a portentous VO describing myriad design features, the ad favours a more tactile approach. Subtle gestures make a big impression - for Volvo, this is the ideal starting point when designing their interiors.

Jose Cuervo
"Last Days"
2 mins
7 Mar 2017
It's the end of the world as we know it... and with a little tequila we'll feel just fine. Jose Cuervo encourage us to live in the moment in this poignantly defiant film, set in a remote dive bar as the apocalypse looms. Some of the bar's patrons flee and take their chances in the storm, while others decide to stay put and wait for the inevitable.

Land Rover
"Night Sounds"
1 min 40s
4 Mar 2017
The creatures of the night come out to play in this sensory treat for Land Rover. Beautifully shot by Gorgeous’s Chris Palmer and DP Barry Ackroyd, even nature can’t resist a gander at the new Range Rover Velar. Predators lurk in the shadows, but even they know they’re outmuscled by the four-wheeled visitor. Try telling that porcupine to shift, though.

E.on
"Epic Journey"
40s
3 Mar 2017
Ahh... the cupboard under the stairs - convenient dumping ground for everything from gym equipment to Harry Potter. This fun E.on commercial depicts what happens when we let said cupboard get the upper hand, and this chap is forced to navigate all sorts in search of the electricity meter. Good thing E.on have some smart solutions up their sleeve.

GambleAware
"Machine"
45s
2 Mar 2017
The spirit of gambling targets another vulnerable individual in this latest GambleAware ad. Standing at the back of this darkened pub, he needles a lone drinker like a jilted lover channelling his inner Ben Kingsley. He toys with his prey, threatening to pass his winnings on to “her or him, him or her” before his true form is revealed. Unsettling and superbly acted.

Road Safety
"Designated Driver"
60s
1 Mar 2017
This road safety film reminds us that dangerous driving comes in many forms. A woman picks up her sozzled partner from the pub. She shows commendable restraint while he regales her with hazy anecdotes… that is until she picks up her phone. In a darkly comic twist, they both agree the drunken one is in a better state to drive.

Verizon
"Half House"
60s
1 Mar 2017
This whimsical Verizon commercial takes us into 8½ Maple Street - an address which takes the term ‘halfway home’ to extreme levels. Good luck to the estate agent who ever has to shift this place. Still, the family seems content with their ultra-cosy existence. Always helps when you’ve got rapid upload and download speeds in every cubby-hole.

Uniqlo
"Wireless Bra"
66s
27 Feb 2017
Sassy, stylish and snappy, this beguiling Uniqlo commercial suggests - in no uncertain manner - that sitting still is going out of fashion. A group of women in chic but conservative officewear start getting busy with dance moves which emphasise half of them are in a state of semi-undress, and the use of Starcrawler's 'Ants' as a soundtrack with its buzz-saw riff is an inspired choice.

Toyota
"Good Chat"
90s
28 Feb 2017
This touching ad for Toyota explores the value of silence. In a world where we're increasingly encouraged to be open about our feelings, whether in person or shouting into the technological void, director Hamish Rothwell demonstrates that sometimes it's more powerful to say nothing at all.

Honda Civic
"Up"
90s
28 Feb 2017
Aim high and don’t look down, says this stunningly-shot Honda Civic commercial, in which rock climber Imogen Horrocks decides to take the gnarly way up an imposing mountainside. After all, she didn’t become a Team GB member by climbing ladders. Evoking ‘Mission: Impossible II’’s opening scene, Horrocks tackles great heights in searing heat.

Walmart
"Bananas Town"
60s
27 Feb 2017
With a 30" commercial slot during the Oscars carrying a two million dollar price tag this year, brands could be forgiven for playing it safe in terms of content. Retail giant Walmart didn't get the memo, apparently, because they went all-out experimental for a whopping three 60" spots during the ceremony. This film, directed by comedy veterans Seth Rogen and David Goldberg, is the wildest ride of the three.

Five Star Work

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