David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • Rise of The MachinesIn the midst of the apocalypse a man falls to his knees and howls in anguish... for a reason we're not expecting.
    • A shared goal.World Cup heroes Gordon Banks and Geoff Hurst appeal for help on behalf of the Alzheimer's Society.
    • Like watching paint fly.Those who’ve recently given their house a fresh lick of paint may be tempted to go again thanks to this vivid Sherwin-Williams commercial.
    • Be a LegendRussell Brand is doing his bit for the Teenage Cancer Trust in quite possibly the most meta way he can.
    • ADCAN Awards 2017 open for entries.Aspiring filmmakers and animators take note: this year’s ADCAN Awards are looking for entrants.
    • Truly, Madly, DeeplyA teenage boy enjoys 'Truly, Madly, Deeply' a little too much at the dinner table... but not as much as his parents did.
    • Taking a strollThis moody piece for Hugo Boss is keen to get a move on. A restless man ventures into the city after-hours - of course, he cuts a rather dapper figure while he’s at it.
    • When intolerance is better than nothingThis ad for the Alzheimer's Society uses a clever trick to draw attention to the indiscriminate nature of dementia.
    • Morning gloryLocal park superstars will appreciate this ode to Sunday league football from My Accomplice’s Lewis Arnold.
    • Facts from the frontlineAs media outlets contend with the onslaught of fake news, the New York Times assert their authority with a Darren Aronofsky-shot campaign.
    • Running ringsLo-fi production values and shaky audio evoke home shopping's golden era nicely in this fun Dunkin' Donuts ad.

CRAFTWORKS

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

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

Tickets: £20 plus VAT.

● McDonald's McCafe.

● Crossover Club: Peter Souter.

● Nationwide's Mothering Sunday.

● Seb Cardinal of MindsEye.

● The Reunion: Johnny Walker.

TICKETS AND DETAILS HERE.


StubHub
"Machines"
60s
28 April 2017

It's not difficult to imagine a world in which artificial intelligence outsmarts us on all fronts (robots weren't responsible for Trump and Brexit, after all, so perhaps they're already top dog), and this ad for StubHub presents a nightmarish vision of a future where technology has had enough of humanity's bullshit.

As the machines rise and jump-start the apocalypse - toasters revolt, cars refuse to drive, and washing machines fall from the sky - a man falls to his knees and howls in anguish... for a reason we're not expecting.

The reveal offers a complete contrast to the cinematic tone of the rest of the ad, which makes it all the funnier. It's a vaguely threatening way to sell concert tickets - 'go before you die' is a bit sinister - but this entertaining film certainly makes it work.

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Alzheimer's Society
"Spirit of '66"
60s
27 April 2017

Wembley may have changed since Gordon Banks and Geoff Hurst's day, but the memories of their 1966 World Cup victory remain. Unfortunately, this isn't the case for some of their teammates. We’re told dementia has stricken Nobby Stiles, Martin Peters, and Ray Wilson. For Banks and Hurst, it’s a team game till the end - and we can play our part, too.

The ad builds on the charity’s collaborative message, and the presence of two footballing greats will stir emotions even further.

It's a timely communication, too. With the long-term effects of heading a football under increasing scrutiny, the Alzheimer’s Society hopes more can be done to safeguard future generations while comforting past ones.

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Sherwin-Williams
"Epiphany"
30s
27 April 2017

Those who’ve recently given their house a fresh lick of paint may be tempted to go again thanks to this vivid Sherwin-Williams commercial. Plumes of paint surge through space before colliding in spectacular fashion. As hues mingle, the camera glides through clouds and cyclones of colour. Not a bad view, eh?

Psyop’s palette consists of the brand’s Emerald range, and this artful execution does the product justice. What’s more, it’s all achieved in-camera - be sure to check out the making-of video to see how it’s done. Stylish and expressive, the ad suggests our walls deserve a better class of paint... and it's an attractive argument.

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Teenage Cancer Trust
"Be a Legend"
1 min 48s
27 April 2017

Russell Brand is doing his bit for the Teenage Cancer Trust in quite possibly the most meta way he can. It's refreshing to see a celebrity being so frank about his charitable motivations, and Brand's frenetic delivery means he packs an awful lot of observations about charity advertising in less than two minutes.

While Brand's exaggerated, self-aware ego can be too much for some, he fits the self-referential nature of this film perfectly. He draws attention to the nature of their work (the white background of an appeal film, the fact most marathon runners are trying to look charitable on social media, referring to himself as 'the new Diana'), leaving it to cancer sufferer Chris to be professional and make sure slogans are delivered succinctly.

This film offers a satisfying counterpoint to the typical interaction between sufferers and spokespeople in charity ads - there's no trying to guilt trip the viewer, no attempt to inspire via the suffering of others, and nobody will pity Chris after watching this. Well, maybe only for being stuck in a room with Russell Brand all day.

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ADCAN Awards 2017 open for entries.

Aspiring filmmakers and animators take note: this year’s ADCAN Awards are looking for entrants.

Now in its fourth year, the show aims to bring more untapped talent to the fore in 2017. For those unfamiliar with ADCAN, the organisation encourages unsigned talent to show creative leaders what they’re made of.

As well as giving the next generation of filmmakers a leg-up, the competition gives charities and worthy causes some welcome exposure.


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

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On This Day

Mercedes-Benz
"Dreams"
90s
29 Apr 2009
winning ad for the luxury car focuses on a special facet which will prevent you from falling asleep at the wheel. The first portion of the ad lulls the viewer in more ways than one before an idiosyncratic and somewhat surreal pay-off.

Robinsons Cordials
"Bird House"
40s
29 Apr 2009
A charming ad for Robinsons has a bird returning to a home which is a good deal more sophisticated than might be imagined. There are so many gags inside the birdhouse with its TARDIS-like capacity that you'll have to watch it a few times just to spot them all.

Rega (Swiss Ambulance Service)
"Ascent"
90s
29 Apr 2009
This unusual film for the Swiss Ambulance Service is, if you'll forgive the pun, quite uplifting. At the scene of an accident, onlookers fear the worst for a young girl who appears to be dead but all is not what it seems as she begins a supernatural ascent.

Deep RiverRock
"Cafi"
20s
29 Apr 2013
The dumbness at the centre of this Irish commercial highlighting the rehydrating qualities of the advertised product is very amusing. A man struggles to order an unpronounceable item from the menu in front of him but is his lack of sharpness making life more complicated than it need be?

Ram Trucks
"Courage Is Already Inside"
60s
29 Apr 2015
The cynic in DAVD can't help wondering if this terrific US spot for Ram Trucks is deliberately aimed at yummy mummies on the school run. The female VO asks us if we've ever thought: "I can't compete with that," or "I just don't have anything left on the table" as tough but attractive women climb mountains, gallop on horseback, run into surf in their undies.

Nescafé
"3 in 1"
45s
29 Apr 2015
There's so much gorgeousness in this ad for Nescafé by Mustard's Jean-Paul Frenay that we're more than happy to overlook its minor shortcomings... namely, that it feels a bit rushed because the imagery is so pleasing it feels like it would benefit from a bit of languor. Frenay and his cinematographer - François Starr - have certainly taken the opportunity to show off the full range of their skills.

Prudential
"The Fishermen"
90s
29 Apr 2015
Life for the fishermen of Madagascar looks so tough in this remarkably beautiful South African commercial for Prudential that this could almost be a recruitment video for Somali pirates. But, in fact, it's an homage to the family values of those who risk their lives everyday for to catch the fish that sustains their community.

Renault Twingo
"Show Me A Car!"
3 mins 40s
29 Apr 2015
As a young woman fails to get any satisfaction from a bumbling salesman in a car showroom, she decides to let him know what's what through the medium of song. Musical theatre may not be everyone's cup of tea but those who love it really love it so maybe this extraordinary film for Renault is going to help them corner that particular market.

Canadian School Safety Network
"Kids Read Mean Tweets"
70s
29 Apr 2015
This spot for Canadian School Safety Network is based directly on a segment on Jimmy Kimmel Live! called Celebrities Read Mean Tweets. Anyone familiar with it will know that the slebs involved read out derisory comments made by the public about them, and the amusement is in seeing their reactions. How does that work out when it's translated to teenagers who don't have the cushion of fame to soften the blow?

Audi
"Art of the Cameo"
2 mins 10s
29 Apr 2015
As Marvel fans will heartily attest, some of the most enjoyable moments in the comic giant's cinematic fare come from spotting legendary creator Stan Lee in his customary cameo appearances. This geektastic ad from Audi has Mr Lee imparting his years of cameo acting wisdom to recognisable faces like Kevin Smith, Tara Reid, and Michael Rooker.

Knorr
"Love at First Taste"
3 mins 15s
29 Apr 2016
This sweet and compelling film for Knorr is redolent of the TV series First Date, in which couples who've never met before dine while they date. The twist with this, however, is that the bunch of singletons selected here are matched according to their palate... and are instructed to only eat by feeding each other. Director Tatia Pilieva does a marvellous job of capturing these scenarios.

Ronseal
"Fence"
3 mins 10s
29 Apr 2016
If you want to generate a big response on social media, it's a good idea to put your new commercial in the first ad break of a programme that has a lot of people tweeting along and Channel 4's Gogglebox is the current champion of this phenomenon. This explains why Ronseal decided it was the perfect slot for their extraordinary new TV commercial which duly delivered with a huge ripple across the internet.

UKIP
"Octopus"
4 mins 40s
29 Apr 2005
UKIP make their pitch at the general election with a War Of The Worlds metaphor to explain their irrational fear of all things European. A Richard Burton-esque voiceover is combined with amusing special effects and a musical backing designed to sound a bit like Jeff Wayne's 1970s musical offering.

EA Sports
"More World Cup Dreams"
30s
29 Apr 2006
Members of the public share their hopes for the World Cup though it's not clear whether they are talking about the real one or the one they may hold themselves in the comfort of their living rooms.

Mondays
"Clown"
30s
29 Apr 2006
The bloke with the voice like Harry H Corbett asks why a clown is looking so glum and then tries to cheer him up by throwing a knife at a board with balloons attached. He misses the balloons but because the nearest numbers win in the new lottery game, the balloons pop nonetheless.

Carling
"Goal Scorer"
30s
29 Apr 2006
Belated post script to the Carling ad in which a mass football game develops because of a stray ball. The goal scorer is interviewed about his contribution but abashed he is barely able to say a word.

Road Safety (Ulster)
"I Can't Take (My Eyes Off You)"
60s
29 Apr 2007
Extraordinarily violent and impactful road safety film demonstrates how many innocent people can be affected by the selfishness of one driver as an act of impatience leads to death and destruction on an almost unbelievable scale.

Kellogg's Coco Pops
"Begin the Adventure"
30s
29 Apr 2007
Very cleverly put together commercial for the breakfast cereal which is normally advertised by an irritating animated monkey has the contents of the box combining to form various shapes as the Coco Pops go off in search of adventure. A loose tie-in with added vitamins but neat nonetheless.

Sprite
"Basketball Court"
30s
29 Apr 2007
Apparently downing some Sprite is as refreshing as suddenly discovering the dry basketball court on which you play has been converted to a swimming pool. At least that's the proposition posited here as young men dive enthusiastically into the spontaneous oasis.

The F Word
"Gladiator Spoof"
70s
29 Apr 2008
A splendid trail for a new series of The F Word parodies a famous scene from Ridley Scott's gladiator in which Russell Crowe prepares his troops for battle. Here, the role of Crowe is taken by Gordon Ramsay who offers a rousing speech to hordes of chefs.

Visit The Heart
"Henry V"
30s
29 Apr 2009
Like the other ad in this series, this ad for the Midlands focuses on two contrasting aspects of the region. It's the home of Shakespeare and so we see an actor performing a speech from Henry V... but it's also the site of rock festivals so he dives into the crowd.

Topshop
"Photo Shoot"
65s
29 Apr 2009
It's hard to grasp the place that Topshop has in the heart of British women. In DAVID's youth, Topshop's ubiquity on the HIgh Street was right up there with Wimpy and Woolworths but, while the latter duo have all but faded from view, Topshop has become fashionable again.

Waitrose
"Heston's Steaks"
60s
29 Apr 2010
Heston Blumenthal surprises us by producing a recipe that doesn't require a degree in physics and chemistry in the latest commercial for Waitrose. He still manages to make it sound a little bit fussy... but this seems genuinely doable.

Age UK
"Ian McKellen"
60s
29 Apr 2010
Another outing for the lip-synch technique which worked so well with Brian Cox. Ian McKellen proves just as adept at shaping his mouth to the words of others before explaining that Age UK can help older people who are isolated and lonely because of neglect.

Asda
"For You"
20s
29 Apr 2010
This is the strongest work for Asda for some time. It's stylish without being flashy and makes its point about green supermarket's ability to save punters' money without the usual hue and cry, arse slapping and other exhibitions of cheapness.

On This Day

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