David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • B-Reel Films become BRF.B-Reel Films have rung the changes in 2017 by rebranding themselves as BRF.
    • Well spotted.This live-action ad for 'Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Wildlands' sees a cat chase a mysterious red dot around the room.
    • How to save a life... live.Channel 4 and Cancer Research present television's first live colonoscopy.
    • What Goes Up...This promo for Channel 4's beleaguered reality show 'The Jump' features the smooth, sensual vocal stylings of Westlife.
    • Dancing as you're peeling.Something interesting always happens when an agency like W+K gets into bed with a client like Sainsbury's and so it proves with the agency's début TV work fr its big new client.
    • Bosch Peps Up Friend LondonAward-winning Spanish director Pep Bosch signs to Friend London for UK representation.
    • Tom Noakes flocks to Prettybird.Filmmaker and skateboarding fanatic Tom Noakes has signed for Prettybird.
    • The French connection.This tongue-in-cheek ad from agency Glory Paris and language course website Speak Well offers sanctuary for Americans eager to escape whatever President Trump has in store.
    • Been Here Since ForeverThis year's Australia Day ad features a controversial sped-up re-colonisation of the country... all for the love of a barbie.
    • Laughing with despairSebastien Petretti's short film offers hope, humour and despair in equal measure.
    • Endless runner.Here’s a film you just want to keep running and running and running. Bulgarian parkour artist Ilko Iliev turns the city streets into one endless assault course.
    • Alex Turner arrives at Fat Lemon.Commercial director and documentary filmmaker Alex Turner has joined Fat Lemon’s carefully assembled roster for representation.
    • Andrea Jade Colomb is an OutsiderOutsider have snagged South African-born director AJ Colomb for their roster.
    • Cracking line-up for CraftWorks.Our first CraftWorks of 2017 takes place on January 25th. In the morning. At the LSE Student Union building. It's going to be great. Come along.
    • A budding successThe first advertising push for Apple’s AirPod earphones has a job on its hands.
    • A sleeper hitAn Audi technician ‘tucks in’ the factory’s supercomputer for the night. But what happens when artificial intelligence drifts off to the land of Nod?

CRAFTWORKS 2017

On 25th January - between 9.30am and 11.30am - DAVID REVIEWS and the APA are putting on the next CraftWorks show at the LSE Student Union building in Lincoln's Inn Fields.

The event costs just £20 plus VAT per ticket.

We'll be talking Heathrow's bears; meeting director Sebastien Petretti; looking back at Green Wing with Victoria Pile; and reuniting some of the people who made Sony Bravia 'Paint'.

FOR MORE INFORMATION AND TO BUY TICKETS CLICK HERE.


B-Reel Films become BRF.

B-Reel Films have rung the changes in 2017 by rebranding themselves as BRF.

They’ve had the works done: new name; new website; and new logo. We’ll give you a moment to make the necessary changes to your contact list.

So why the fresh lick of paint?


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Wildlands
"The Red Dot"
1 min 32s
19 January 2017

Despite shuffling off this mortal coil in 2013, Tom Clancy’s name still adorns Ubisoft’s range of tactical shooters. The latest is ‘Ghost Recon: Wildlands’, and this live-action ad directed by John McTiernan sets the scene with some feline help.

While three hardmen play cards, a cat notices a red dot dancing around the room. It pursues the dot until it’s shoved away by one of the goons. Before his cohorts can warn him about the dot resting on his forehead, all three are terminated with extreme prejudice. The cat, meanwhile, escapes with all nine lives intact.

Black ops have rarely looked so cuddly - a wry invitation for gamers to try the game’s beta event. Action movie buffs will also be intrigued to see McTiernan’s name here. It’s the ‘Die Hard’ director’s first project since 2003’s ‘Basic’. While that film bombed, this is a direct hit.

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Cancer Research
"Live Colonoscopy"
90s
19 January 2017

Some Channel 4 viewers will have been caught off-guard while watching ‘A New Life in the Sun’ on Wednesday afternoon. After all, it’s not every day you see a live colonoscopy take place.

Eager to remind audiences how the charity is tackling the disease in real-time, we’re shown how a potentially cancerous bowel polyp is removed. It’s graphic footage, and we can’t help but feel extra-aware of our body's internal workings while watching it.

There is an element of shock value, of course. But this campaign has always been about showing the everyday realities of cancer. This measured tone remains intact here; the surgeon’s contribution is both reassuring and insightful, and the procedure is described as being pain-free.

Cancer Research hopes this will not only ease anxiety about such treatments, but crucially allow more advanced techniques to be developed. Perhaps reality television can do some good.

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The Jump
"Flying Without Wings"
50s
18 January 2017

This promo for Channel 4's beleaguered reality show 'The Jump' - in which celebrities compete at winter sports they're barely trained in for the craic - features the plangent vocals of Westlife.

'Flying Without Wings' accompanies shots of this year's batch of slebs flying through a snowy landscape, with appropriately transcendent expressions as they perform improbable acrobatic feats.

At least, until a friendly owl flies past and tells the formation that what they're doing is 'aerodynamically impossible' - bringing them back down to earth with a thud.

Considering the fact contestants are frequently injured (actress Tina Hobley has said she has struggled to 'drive, dress [and] wash my hair' since an accident on the show last year), we can't imagine how C4 got the latest to sign up... but there are plenty of them. Perhaps it's true - people really will do anything to get on telly.

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Sainsbury's
"Food Dancing"
60s
18 January 2017

Something interesting always happens when an agency like W+K gets into bed with a client like Sainsbury's and so it proves with the agency's début TV work for its big new client.

Orange Supermarket has been placed at the forefront of a new movement called #fooddancing by an ad with an earwormy soundtrack from MysDiggi combined with a montage that's been made to look as though it's been clandestinely filmed in our actual kitchens.

Part of its boldness lies in the lack of slickness. Siri Bunford has delivered a film which - like the food prepared in the majority of British homes - looks like it's been thrown together rather than carefully assembled using tweezers. It gives it a relatable authenticity... very much advertising's plat de jour and, judging by the response on social media, the public are buying into the conceit with precisely the positivity hoped for by both Sainsbury's and their new agency.

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Recent Promos

Short Films
"We Rise"
2 mins 38s
19 Jan 2017
This short film follows a band as they travel to and prepare for a gig. But this is a band we - the population in general - would not expect to exist. Because of our prejudices, we tend to assume folk with learning disabilities and differences such as autism aren't capable of coming together in this way. 'We Rise' challenges this assumption with energy, skill, and consummate grace.

Bonobo
"No Reason (ft Nick Murphy)"
4 mins 03s
19 Jan 2017
This surreal film by Oscar Hudson is 'about staying indoors'. It explores the Japanese phenomenon of hikikomori - young people so overwhelmed by life that they retreat to their bedrooms for years at a time. All the effects were done practically in camera, with the production team building eighteen almost identical rooms and props in multiple sizes.

Tor Miller
"Always"
3 mins 41s
15 Jan 2017
Brooklyn-born singer Tor Miller walks through an endless underpass in his latest release 'Always'. Besieged with doubts about his relationship, his fears are represented in the accompanying promo by identical women who accost him along the way. Is his significant other more replaceable than he wants to believe? Is he just afraid of being alone?

Young Thug
"Wyclef Jean"
4 mins 52s
17 Jan 2017
This promo consists of director (sorry, co-director) Ryan Staake explaining in intricate detail how the film he'd planned to make fell apart spectacularly... mainly because the artist never showed up. Young Thug's only contribution is a voicemail about his creative vision ("kiddie cars... and bad bitches, a lot of hoes"). Oh, and some mobile phone footage of him miming to 'Wyclef Jean' and eating Cheetos.

The Weeknd
"Party Monster"
4 mins 27s
17 Jan 2017
The Weeknd's recent dalliance with Selena Gomez has got everyone in a tizz: his ex, Bella Hadid; her ex, Justin Bieber; and pretty much anyone willing to voice their opinion. In amongst it all, there's 'Party Monster'. Augmented vocals and eerie synths resonate throughout the singer's latest track, while director BRTHR has crafted another hyper-realized promo. You may need to rest your eyes afterwards.

SOHN
"Hard Liquor"
4 mins 04s
9 Jan 2017
With 'Hard Liquor' SOHN adds Moby-style blues to his usual cocktail of plangency and tricksy electronics. Jovan Todorovic's accompanying promo amplifies the mood, centring around a man stumbling through a monochrome setting in which a car lurks predatorily in the shadows. His drink-dazed intensity is impressively compelling.

David Bowie
"No Plan"
4 mins 01s
12 Jan 2017
Historians will likely pinpoint David Bowie’s death as the moment we should’ve realised 2016 was a write-off. Still, we made it to 2017 somehow, and the music keeps coming. The title track from Bowie’s posthumous ‘No Plan’ EP receives a suitably elegaic promo from Tom Hingston.

Las Aves
"Die in Shanghai"
3 mins 46s
9 Jan 2017
French pop group Las Aves reunite with director Daniel Brereton for some more girl-gang attitude. Instead of Peckham, the action takes place on the streets of - you guessed it - Shanghai. The city’s tight alleys and modern districts play host to some acrobatic street entertainment. These five visions in electric pink roam the city while cartwheeling, spinning plates, and juggling diabolos.

Sonia Stein
"One Of Those Things"
3 mins 51s
9 Jan 2017
A polished promo for pop songstress Sonia Stein sees her surveying the city skyline from her apartment before heading out into the night. The clip has a vibe that evokes the uber-slick styling of Prince and Michael Jackson album covers circa mid-80s and serves the singer's sultry track very well. Anyone feeling nostalgic for Sade (the singer, not the Marquis) might have found their new muse right here.

Jenny Hval
"The Great Undressing"
3 mins 45s
5 Jan 2017
Norwegian artist Jenny Hval makes uncompromising music. Having won critical acclaim for 2016's 'Blood Bitch' which looks at the taboo subject of menstruation through the prism of popular vampire tropes, her latest track from the same album comes with a video which explores the perception of self in a fast-moving and unheeding world.

Artificial Pleasure
"I'll Make It Worth Your While"
3 mins 30s
4 Jan 2017
Blend Talking Heads with The Human League and a smidgen of Bowie, add a generous sprinkle of Heaven 17 - and you'll have yourself a classy cocktail named Artificial Pleasure. 'I'll Make It Worth Your While' could be a synthpop-era classic: irrepressibly buoyant and tinnily precise all at once. But it also comes something else in tow - a monumentally cuckoo video you can't tear yourself away from.

Elvis Presley
"The Wonder of You"
2 mins 34s
13 Dec 2016
It seems there are visual parallels between Kate Moss's fashion pics and some of the more iconic shots of Elvis. At least, the apparent similarity is what inspired Vaughan Arnell to film this black and white clip of the supermodel lip-syncing to the ballad 'The Wonder of You' in a variety of outfits, including a leather jumpsuit akin to one worn by The King himself.

Tesla Boy
"Circles"
5 mins 18s
8 Dec 2016
We know to expect the unexpected when Tesla Boy and Ryan Patrick work together. Still, nothing could’ve prepared us for this. The premise is apparently inspired by ‘Cloud Atlas’ and its multiple character portrayals. Sure enough, lead actor Maaz Ali literally loses face as he swaps identities on the fly. Now that’s a surefire way to complicate a blind date.

Alice Jemima
"Electric"
3 mins 10s
8 Dec 2016
Devon’s own Alice Jemima picks an impressive backdrop for her latest single. As London’s skyline flickers in the distance, the singer-songwriter awaits a special delivery on top of a multi-storey car park. Jemima gives nothing away when the camera is near, but she makes “We can light this dark, dark city up” sound like the only invitation that matters.

Frances
"Grow"
4 mins 03s
8 Dec 2016
'Grow' by Frances features on the soundtrack for 'Mum's List' - a bittersweet portrayal of life after tragedy. The promo flits between footage from the film and Frances playing at a piano covered with family photos. It's hard not to be moved by the singer-songwriter's voice, and the restrained setting lets her emotional delivery take the lead.

Naughty Boy
"Should've Been Me"
4 mins 25s
6 Dec 2016
Naughty Boy’s latest track benefits from an uplifting promo by director Ben Strebel. Skate parks are a staple setting for music videos, but Strebel offers a new perspective with a trip to Uganda where a skate park offers the chance for self-expression in Kampala’s Kintale slums. One boy watches his peers own the half-pipe before he starts shredding and grinding like the best of them.

The Rolling Stones
"Ride 'Em On Down"
3 mins 18s
2 Dec 2016
This promo for a new track by the Rolling Stones features Kristen Stewart as a woman using her car to burn fuel on meaningless adventures in post apocalypse LA - Mad Maxine, as it were. Not that this is abundantly clear from the get go... the puzzle pieces are there but it's left to the viewer to satisfyingly slot them into place.

Loyle Carner
"The Isle of Arran"
3 mins 37s
2 Dec 2016
In Georgia Hudson's promo for 'Isle of Arran', Loyle Carner walks through the corridors of an unearthly hospital on his way to visit his newborn child. The track is all about the importance of fathers being there for their children, and Hudson does a great job of showing his conviction as he cradles the baby in the fading light of the maternity ward windows.

Capital Cities
"Vowels"
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.

Passenger
"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.

Banfi
"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.

Recent Promos

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