David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

VW
"The Second Speech"
3 mins 43s
1 September 2017
UK Cars

If the current appetite for authenticity is met by work like this then we can't help feeling that everything's going to be all right. Between them, adam&eveDDB and Outsider's Max Fisher have delivered a film with real heart and they've achieved it by being entirely unafraid of being sentimental.

The ad tells the story of a best man's speech that went horribly wrong, and what the embarrassed fellow at its centre did to make amends.

The opening forty seconds is video footage from the wedding itself where - despite the encouragement of the other guests - the best man simply cannot regain his composure after a bad start. There is embarrassed laughter in the background but it's entirely empathic and, like those in attendance, you find yourself willing him to overcome his nerves. But he doesn't, and he has to hand his speech to another friend.

A few months on, he describes how he feels about what happened. Quite rightly, his main thought is for his friend Ross and his wife Jen. He recognises that his failure overshadowed their day because it's what everyone was talking about afterwards, and he's desperate to make it up to them. Jen hasn't spoken to him since her wedding day and to judge by her sceptical face when she climbs in the car, she agrees with him about the impact his horror show had on her big day and is unconvinced that this exercise is going to help.

She's wrong though. Following the most awkward of awkward silences as he drives them to a quiet spot, he manages to express the sentiments that eluded him a few months ago. His delivery is still nervous and lacking in slickness, but this makes it all the more genuine and director Max Fisher shows impeccable judgement in allowing this. The authenticity allows us to see the protagonist's vulnerability from another angle, and you can literally see the moment when Jen is able to forgive him.

There must have been much discussion about the wisdom of focusing on the advertised car. Because they are inside the vehicle, it becomes a cipher for reliability and that's more than enough but the ad pushes it further than that, including as much about the car as it can without undermining the poignancy.

It's a great job and everything that online films should be. Watching it for the first time, DAVID had no idea how long it was and discovering that it's almost four minutes long was a surprise.

Editor Rebecca Luff deserves a big shout out. It must have taken a lot of skill to get this note perfect while making sure it flows naturally, and avoiding a sense of exploitation without losing any of the most emotional moments. DAVID's favourite comes at 00:54 with a telling glance from the best man as he straps himself into the car.

It reminds us that he's not at all sure this is a good idea, something that provides this film with a lot of its emotional power.

Carlsberg
"Commute"

Mary said:

sorry, wrong ad


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VW
"The Second Speech"
3 mins 43s
1 Sep 2017
If the current appetite for authenticity is met by work like this then we can't help feeling that everything's going to be all right. Between them, adam&eveDDB and Outsider's Max Fisher have delivered a film with real heart and they've achieved it by being entirely unafraid of being sentimental. The ad tells the story of a best man's speech that went horribly wrong, and what the embarrassed fellow at its centre did to make amends.

VW
"Finding Yourself"
60s
8 Jul 2017
This lovely commercial for VW - designed to underscore the car company's support for independent cinema in the UK - features an ageing hippy who claims to be "a condor, eddying on an invisible breeze" as he negotiates his vehicle through unfamiliar terrain. We might be inclined to believe him if it weren't for the telltale voice of his satnav coldly issuing the instructions which help him make his way to a remote spa.

VW
"The Button"
60s
3 Jul 2017
adam&eveDBB and director Gary Freedman manages to satirise and pay homage in equal measure with this instalment in a series of film-focused outings for VW. It sees villains from across genres come together in agreement over one thing: the importance of having a big, bad button to push as they carry out their nefarious plans with a cackle.

VW
"Ad"
90s
8 May 2017
Simon & Garfunkel's 1968 hit 'America' provides the perfect musical backdrop for an emotional journey as a family sets off on a trans-continental trip in this commercial for VW. It's a time for reflection and reminiscence as the Irish-born matriarch opens up and tells her grandchildren why she and her husband chose to cross the Atlantic and start a new life.

VW
"Gesture"
40s
21 Mar 2017
Iggy Pop's 'The Passenger' became synonymous with car ads thanks to a 1998 Toyota Avensis commercial; now it's VW's turn to hit play. The German marque places great importance on gestures in this Golf ad... though motorists seeking compensation over the emissions scandal will be expecting something more on the lines of a generous gesture of goodwill.

VW
"My Volkswagen"
60s
13 Feb 2017
We’re led to believe this lot are divulging some dating revelations. A nerdish chap is struggling to read “the signs”, while one woman reveals: “I know I need to do it - I just don’t know when”. As it turns out, they’re each describing their experiences with ‘My Volkswagen’ - an app designed to help drivers keep on top of their car’s maintenance. A droll way of drawing prospective VW owners’ attention.

VW
"Car Karaoke"
75s
7 Jan 2017
Festive traffic jams are no concern for a musical family in this funny ad for VW. It's a familiar scene: kids bored in the back, parents equally bored in the front as the cars around them go nowhere. All that's missing is an 'are we nearly there yet?'. That is, until Dad decides to bust out some tunes and take a creative approach to killing time - one the rest of the family soon join in with.

VW
"The Parcel Locker"
88s
15 Dec 2016
VW advertise their latest service - the ability to order their cars online - with an amusing ad featuring a PO Box prank. The best part of this is undoubtedly the 'huh, neat' reactions from members of the public when the 'parcel' is revealed, and the throwaway bit of genius 'I didn't think there'd be this much polystyrene'. Good natured fly on the wall stuff.

VW
"Relief"
83s
14 Dec 2016
Nature calls again and again in this entertaining VW commercial from Argentina. These motorists each have a full tank of a different kind. A lovely slow-motion sequence reminds us it doesn’t matter where you are: when you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go. Director Rodrigo Garcia Saiz conveys each moment of release with good humour.

VW
"Alien"
60s
10 Nov 2016
VW's latest ad supporting independent cinema should provide respite for those already weary of cute Christmas critters. A couple find themselves hunted by an extraterrestrial with an attitude problem. And you thought multi-storey car park charges were bad. An entertaining blend of sci-fi thrills and, erm, handsfree technology.

VW
"Barry's Golden Beetle"
2 mins 11s
4 Nov 2016
The VW Beetle's legacy has been beautifully tapped into by this online film from adam&eveDDB - Doyle Dane Bernbach's contemporary equivalent - which has been directed with great sensitivity and skill by documentarian Amanda Blue. The agency are never fearful of using sentimentality and this really seems to help them employ it effectively.

VW
"Mafia"
60s
10 Oct 2016
You'd think mafiosos would've learned by now never to accept a lift. Still, Mickey's happy to go for a ride in this latest Volkswagen ad promoting independent cinemas. At first, Mickey has no need to feel nervous. After all, it's just another car ride with Paulie - the latest in a long, distinguished line of Paulies - and Carmillo's suspiciously quiet son, right? Wrong!

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.

VW
"Sammi's Dad"
40s
6 Mar 2016
Director Tom Shankland marks his arrival at Great Guns with this amusing VW commercial from the United Arab Emirates. It's only natural to ask a little child what they want to be when they grow up, but this lad gives a surprising response: he wants to be like Sammi's dad. It puts his own father in a bad light, but we soon realise the two share the same ambition on account of the VW on next door's driveway.

VW
"Then. Now. Always."
50s
3 Feb 2016
This German-made ad is the first significant piece of communication from the car manufacturer since it was revealed it had been cheating on emissions tests. It sidesteps any sense of culpability, opting instead to remind us of its heritage through the life of a young man who has hopped from one VW to the next as he's journeyed through life.

VW
"Trailer Assist"
1 min 40s
20 Jan 2016
It's safe to say that VW will be hoping for better times in 2016. Easier said than done with the emissions scandal still fresh in people's minds, and this means the car maker's advertising will have to bear the brunt of even more scrutiny than they're used to. This Norwegian ad shows the brand aren't scared of being the centre attention as they produce some heart-in-mouth reversing on the streets of Lillestrom. Only it turns out VW aren't telling the whole truth...

VW
"Special Feature"
80s
29 May 2015
The ominous tone of this VW ad takes an unexpected turn after a late night meeting goes wrong. Marching to his car like vengeance in a suit, the harassed businessman finds his Golf isn't keen to open its doors to him. It instead gives him the runaround and leaves him flailing. Once he finally sinks to his knees in defeat, the car's fictitious Stress Detector technology is satisfied he's calmed down.

VW
"Moments"
90s
19 May 2015
This South African Volkswagen commercial is an especially clever one as home footage depicts the journey of a woman from childhood to graduation. As the years go by, you might be wondering whether the pay-off is coming or not. The clever thing is... it already has - and the ad then rewinds to a pivotal moment in her life that you might not have noticed the first time around.

VW
"Kitty Cat"
60s
7 May 2015
After staying up all night to watch the election results, DAVID may be hallucinating... this appears to include clips made by the general public of people dressed up as cats. You may feel you've got the idea and stop watching before the end but we thoroughly recommend that you stay with it as it moves in a direction you might not expect.

VW
"Mom"
45s
29 Apr 2015
Another commercial - this time from the USA - suggesting children are best kept harnessed in the back of your car. Three boys wreak havoc when mum stops to fill up with fuel while another car cruises past with contented children reading and so forth. The mayhem itself is entertaining and the commercial instils the idea well enough but it doesn't quite nail it.

VW
"The Choice"
90s
8 Apr 2015
A man dies and leaves a letter for his nephew, who is the only person he trusts with his world-changing secret. So the young man heads out to the palatial house in the country where the secret can be found. What will it be? What are the consequences? And should he have trusted his nephew at all? Find out.

VW
"Bill the Boss"
60s
16 Feb 2015
Bill is the boss of a business that relies on its fleet of VW vans, and this observer's view of his behaviour during an average day suggests he's a gentle chap. His affable face and well-padded shape radiate the comforting squashiness of a favourite teddy, and he's solicitous of other people's welfare almost to a fault. But at his local VW Van Centre he gets the treatment he usually dispenses.

VW
"Caddy"
60s
1 Oct 2014
A classic VW ad which has the sort of vintage humour those of us who are more advanced in years will recognise from the late 70s and early 80s. A factory boss strides onto the floor to bellow in rage that someone's VW Caddy has blocked him in - who is it, and move it, like, yesterday. He isn't expecting quite the response he gets when the workers wordlessly comply.

VW
"Explosion"
60s
9 Jul 2014
Another action movie sequence demonstrates one of VW's impressive safety features in this high-octane spot. A driver has been ordered to destroy a truckload of bio-hazardous container drums - so he points his vehicle in the right direction, accelerates, and launches himself out of the car as it speeds towards its target. What happens next shows that VWs are designed by very sensible and responsible people indeed.

VW
"Mobile Warning"
80s
11 Jun 2014
This ingenious spot out of China has VW warning an unsuspecting audience about the dangers of using a mobile phone while driving. Cinema-goers are watching the plot of a film unfold on screen - a group of people on a road trip - when suddenly their phones ring and they reach to answer them. The ensuing horror leaves them stunned, and - we suspect - a lot more wary about answering a call behind the wheel.

1-25 of 93 Results

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