David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • 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.
    • A dog's lifeAndrex pick a lovely way of marking their advertising heritage with a warm nostalgia hit.
    • A Very Big House In The CountryApparent Blur fan Ryan Reynolds lives in a very big house in the country in another amusing spot for BT Broadband.
    • In a wizarding world... The spirit of Don LaFontaine lives on in this fun ad for the Harry Potter Studio Tour.
    • Definitely MaybeDanish dynamite Mads Mikkelsen ruminates on why his compatriots are the happiest people on Earth in this amusing ad.
    • A feast for the eyesThis effective trail for CNN’s Original Series strand packs plenty of screen time into 60”.
    • Carlos Font Clos at top Speade.Speade add some Spanish zest to their editing roster courtesy of Carlos Font Clos.
    • Forward-thinking since 1989.With boxing fans eagerly anticipating Anthony Joshua’s bout against Wladimir Klitschko, Lucozade Sport present this gritty ad charting the former’s rise to prominence.
    • Wife on MarsThe latest instalment of giffgaff's ongoing campaign reasserts the disruptive brand's position as a provider of freedom.
    • Everyone is WelcomeAs more completely rational travel bans loom on the horizon, the city of Los Angeles has launched a tourism campaign with a clear message: everyone is welcome.

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.


New York Times
"Bartella"
60s
24 April 2017

As media outlets contend with the onslaught of fake news, the New York Times asserts their authority with a Darren Aronofsky-shot campaign. This 60” commercial charts one day in Bartella, Iraq, as told by photographer Brian Denton.

Denton’s testimony fills in the gaps as this grave slideshow unfolds. Each snap captures a military convoy’s treacherous journey: soldiers peer out from armour; thick smoke contrasts against blue sky; and the immediate aftermath of an explosion produces shattered vehicles and shattered people.

The ad shows due reverence for the photojournalist’s craft. Blurred images are just as crucial as full ones, while Denton’s brief pause underlines the human impact. The newspaper believes such work is what elevates their coverage - and pointedly advocate fact over fiction.

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Dunkin' Donuts
"Marathon Motivator"
1 min 54s
24 April 2017

Lo-fi production values and shaky audio evoke home shopping's golden era nicely in this fun Dunkin' Donuts ad. While the brand has previously struggled in the UK, this London Marathon tie-in suggests they’re keen to win over sweet-toothed viewers.

Smooth-as-you-like presenter Mark introduces the ‘Marathon Motivator’ - a doughnut attached to a head harness. Ably demonstrated by Suzie, we’re told the gizmo comes with a “patented scent flow”. Perhaps David Wyeth could’ve done with one of these.

The performances and dialogue are spot-on. From Suzie’s “motivated” spiel to Mark’s explanation of what PB stands for, the ad revels in deliberate shoddiness. It's worth rewatching for the scrolling text offering naff advice to potential buyers. No luck for fans of Boston cream, though.

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Andrex
"75th Anniversary"
30s
24 April 2017

This a lovely way to mark Andrex's advertising heritage. As a compilation of vintage Andrex ads plays, the camera slowly pans out to reveal an adult Labrador Retriever watching the screen. While the pooch relives its glory days, a puppy shows this household's loo roll is in good hands - well, paws.

It’s a charming reflection of the mascot’s staying power. Having survived a brush with CGI a few years ago, the real thing remains a shrewd choice. Blending nostalgia and a warm, familial vibe, the ad reinforces the brand’s relevance seventy-five years on.

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BT Broadband
"Country House"
40s
22 April 2017

Apparent Blur fan Ryan Reynolds lives in a very big house in the country in another amusing spot for BT Broadband. Reynolds gives the kind of brilliantly deadpan performance we've come to expect, quite a feat in a series which has seen him get slapped across the face and cling to a helicopter for dear life - all in the name of fast wi-fi.

We follow Reynolds on a break-neck tour of his country estate, as the tweed-clad actor demonstrates his broadband coverage in various locations. He hides in the attic, rides a horse in his dining room, and finally locates his pet falcon (Copernicus, no less) in a hedge maze.

The bird's delayed appearance is a lovely bit of slapstick, enhanced by the blase reactions from the production team we've seen throughout the campaign. It's a good thing Copernicus didn't interrupt the filming of Deadpool 2 - we don't fancy his odds against a katana.

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Harry Potter Studio Tour
"Forbidden Forest"
60s
21 April 2017

The spirit of Don LaFontaine lives on in this fun ad for the Harry Potter Studio Tour. A gritty VO reveals that the behind-the-scenes attraction has added the Forbidden Forest set - complete with fully functioning lightning button. As the announcer seemingly goes off-script, it turns out dad’s just doing his best movie trailer voice. Needless to say, his offspring are less than enchanted.

Even mum can’t resist humming the film’s twinkling theme. It’s a simple reminder of how the Harry Potter franchise continues to captivate audiences of all ages, and fans will relish the chance get up close and personal with a Hippogriff. Mind you, arachnophobes may need something stronger than Butterbeer to settle the nerves.

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QUICK SEARCH

Five Star Work

New York Times
"Lesbos"
60s
24 Apr 2017
One of two hard-hitting ads for the New York Times directed by Darren Aronofsky. Photojournalist Tyler Hicks relates his time covering the migrant crisis in vivid detail, both verbally and visually. Despite the desperate circumstances, Hicks sees cause for optimism - and the advertised newspaper promises to bring readers every side of the story.

New York Times
"Bartella"
60s
24 Apr 2017
As media outlets contend with the onslaught of fake news, the New York Times assert their authority with a Darren Aronofsky-shot campaign. This 60” commercial charts one day in Bartella, Iraq, as told by photographer Brian Denton. Denton’s testimony fills in the gaps as this grave slideshow captures a military convoy's treacherous journey.

BT Broadband
"Country House"
40s
22 Apr 2017
Apparent Blur fan Ryan Reynolds lives in a very big house in the country in another amusing spot for BT Broadband. Reynolds gives the kind of brilliantly deadpan performance we've come to expect, quite a feat in a series which has seen him get slapped across the face and cling to a helicopter for dear life - all in the name of fast wi-fi.

Carlsberg
"The Danish Way"
60s
21 Apr 2017
Danish dynamite Mads Mikkelsen ruminates on why his compatriots are the happiest people on Earth in this amusing ad for Carlsberg. The actor keeps an admirably straight face throughout his whimsical bike ride, as he waxes lyrical about the Danish commitment to appreciating nature, maintaining a work-life balance, and - of couse - beer.

Lucozade Sport
"Anthony Joshua"
90s
19 Apr 2017
With boxing fans eagerly anticipating Anthony Joshua’s bout against Wladimir Klitschko, Lucozade Sport present this gritty ad charting the former’s rise to prominence. An urgent sequence charts Joshua’s early years. We see a young man always running… sometimes with the wrong crowd. These transgressions don’t keep him off-track for long, however.

giffgaff
"The Big Swim"
90s
19 Apr 2017
The latest instalment of giffgaff's ongoing campaign reasserts the disruptive brand's position as a provider of freedom. Their customer-led approach has forced its competitors to have a rethink and some of them are starting to echo giffgaff's central proposition. But don't expect the sector's upstart to be put out... it's probably what they've been hoping their rivals will do!

Boots No 7
"Amanda Foster"
40s
13 Apr 2017
Stuntwork is risky business. Performers endure falls, crashes, infernos, and all manner of dicey deeds ... all to ensure the leads make it to the première intact. Boots No 7 give one stunt pro top billing. Her name is Amanda Foster - and she’s got a date with a glass window.

Ciel
"An Evil Thirst"
1 min 38s
13 Apr 2017
Ciel bottled water pays homage to Mad Max in this high-octane ad. Tributes to George Miller's post-apocalyptic series come thick and fast, from the central Furiosa-style character to visual nods like a flamethrower spewing fire over the wasteland. With all that action, it's no wonder the starring actress gets dehydrated before she notices, just in time to forget her lines at the critical moment.

Domino's Pizza
"It's No Secret"
30s
14 Apr 2017
Domino's assure us that all their pizzas are handmade in this amusing ad. Various vignettes suggest what a pizza factory might look like, featuring industrial dough-squishers, tomato sauce paint rollers, and a toppings cannon which we'd quite like to have a go on. All this before revealing that the secret to their handmade pizzas is - drumroll - hands.

HBO
"Static"
65s
12 Apr 2017
Not even HBO can escape John Oliver’s satirical ire… and they employ the bloke. The ‘Last Week Tonight’ host bookends this entertaining ad celebrating the broadcaster’s trademark crackling ident. Of course, Oliver has a bone to pick with the idea. Meanwhile, a roll call of HBO stars deliver a selection of ‘aaahhs’ and hisses.

Virgin Atlantic
"Brexit"
50s
12 Apr 2017
There's never been a better time to buy a jewel-encrusted codpiece, according to Virgin Atlantic. The airline want to let their American customers know that Britain is the perfect holiday destination, since their dollars will stretch much further than before. An American walks into a bar and... no, sorry, Brexit's the only joke in that sentence.

Sheraton
"Dive"
60s
11 Apr 2017
Sheraton hotels want to let us know that their employees go the extra mile to ensure guests have the best experience possible under their care. Director Mark Molloy has created a tongue in cheek film which is by turns dramatic and humorous, featuring some striking underwater work and astute comic timing. The ad opens on a man diving fully-clothed into a body of water - and we soon find out why.

The Sunday Times
"Start the Week"
60s
10 Apr 2017
Ahh the Sunday night blues. Everyone’s felt that twinge of disappointment as the weekend fades and Monday looms. However, The Sunday Times encourages us to embrace the week ahead - starting with the morning paper. We’re told that Sunday is the day when “dreams are dreamt” and “plans are hatched” - and that the advertised newspaper is the ideal launchpad for the week ahead.

Lloyds Bank
"New Dawn"
60s
9 Apr 2017
Lloyds Bank unleash the black horse again for this excellent ad, directed by Frédéric Planchon for adam&eveDDB. The iconic beast gallops in slow-motion through the British landscape, past rural scenes and cities to a final 'Chariots of Fire' beach run. To a slow, gospel-style cover of Fatboy Slim's 'Praise You', we're shown the progression of 250 years of history through the landscape.

Nissan
"The Cloud Catcher"
90s
6 Apr 2017
Two men save their village from drought in this intriguing ad for Nissan. The narrative is captivating from the start, as the pair fashion a cloud-catching device and drive to a nearby mountain. Facing treacherous conditions and the threat of failure, they head into the cloud to deploy their machine and hope they can outrun the lightning that follows...

Urbanears
"Rooms"
1 min 40s
5 Apr 2017
This stylish ad for Urbanears boasts strong production design and an infectious beat. To showcase the brand's range of wireless speakers, BRF's Magnus Härdner crafts a multi-storey shindig. Once the beat kicks in, we're treated to some especially precise gyrating from the colourful cast as the brand's meticulous approach to audio pays off.

Lynx
"Boys Don't Cry"
2 mins 24s
4 Apr 2017
It was only a matter of time before Lynx's 'Men in Progress' series tackled crying. As you'd expect, the interviewees provide both affecting and humorous insights into their more emotional moments. Bobby Petta's powerful contribution, however, takes us by surprise. It's a raw sequence, yet it encapsulates the film's candid tone.

Samsung
"Ostrich"
1 min 50s
30 Mar 2017
Virtual Reality hasn't quite taken off in the fashion many hoped it would but - in this splendid commercial for Samsung - we're offered a super illustration of the impact it has on a creature dreaming of a different kind of take-off altogether, The animal in question is an ostrich who accidentally slips its face into a VR headset and discovers a brave new world in which he's unencumbered by flightlessness.

The National Autistic Society
"Crowded Brain"
60s
3 Apr 2017
Getting from A to B is something many of us take for granted. For some, it can be an alarming ordeal. In this latest film from the National Autistic Society, we join Holly on her journey to a friend’s birthday party. We feel dad’s trepidation as he waves Holly goodbye. We quickly understand why when the bus driver talks. We may hear a friendly greeting, but for Holly, it’s paralysing.

Lotto
"Dylan"
60s
3 Apr 2017
Dylan - a keen yet timid young football player - sees his thus-far pedestrian career in amateur kickabouts take a dramatic turn for the better in this excellent ad for Lotto New Zealand. One trepidatious tap to the ball creates a tectonic shift in his fortunes, despite his right leg's best efforts to sabotage his every move.

du Telecom
"The Man Sitting Next to You"
85s
28 Mar 2017
A trip to the cinema offers ideal escapism for a couple of hours. Unfortunately, it only takes one crunch, slurp, or waft from a fellow patron to break the illusion. For anyone who’s suffered such picturehouse blues, du Telecom feels your pain. Rarely has the worst of cinema etiquette looked so good as arm hairs mingle, popcorn combusts, and nachos literally swim in melted cheese.

ITV Racing
"Grand National"
60s
26 Mar 2017
John Cooper Clarke and The Maccabees's 'Pelican' combine to give this ITV Racing promo terrific energy. The broadcaster taps into how the annual Aintree meeting captures the nation's imagination - and turns us all into racing savants. Form goes out the window when it comes to picking a contender; instead, it's all about "their colours and their funny names".

Nationwide
"Mother's Day"
2 mins
26 Mar 2017
The 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 Mother's 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.

Five Star Work

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