David Reviews

 "You're not an artist, Peggy. You solve problems." Don Draper.

Latest Work
    • The long and short of it.UNICEF offer children a literal lifeline in this quietly effective commercial.
    • Forever sign Danica Kleinknecht.Sasha Nixon and Forever are "thrilled" to confirm the signing of Los Angeles-based director Danica Kleinknecht.
    • Seed it to believe it.This suitably nutty trio of commercials for the Almond Board of California (ABC) shows what a handful of seeds can do for snackers across the UK.
    • Kes 2.Volvo’s latest collaboration with Sky Atlantic focuses on Professor Carl G. Jones - conservation biologist, Welshman, and saviour of the Mauritius kestrel, among other species.
    • Age of the OverstatementThis NHS campaign encouraging people to visit their local pharmacist couldn't have been released at a more appropriate time.
    • Rise of the Eco-Worrier.This adrenaline-fuelled commercial for Friends of the Earth takes on the very modern phenomenon of eco-anxiety.
    • Trey Edward Shults Signs to AcademyUp-and-coming director Trey Edward Shults has joined Academy films for representation in the UK and Europe.
    • Peas in a PodOlympic cyclist Laura Kenny stars in this peppy outing for online estate agents Purple Bricks.
    • The hole package.BT cut loose and spark controversy with this ad for their Halo package.
    • Beyond belief.Puma seem to have taken a leaf out of Joe Goldberg’s book in this 60” commercial fronted by Pep Guardiola.
    • Mr Ben joins Vision.Vision are pleased to announce the signing of production designer Mr. Ben for immediate representation.
    • Playtime is OverUFC welterweight fighter Conor McGregor may be a confirmed arsehole, but this playfully animated commercial for Reebok offers him a shot at redemption.
    • The Biggar they come.Wales fly-half Dan Biggar is no slouch in the staring contest department, as this BBC Sport promo demonstrates.

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UNICEF
"The Lifeline"
1 min 40s
23 January 2020

UNICEF offer children a literal lifeline in this quietly effective commercial, which uses lengths of white rope to show how donations and other forms of support can pull youngsters out of dangerous situations. Ably shot by director Anders Hallberg, the piece shows the effects of war, drought, slavery, etc. on those unable to defend themselves.

The act of tugging on a piece of rope is both tactile and immediate, which suits the organisation’s desire for swift action. There is a hint of the white saviour narrative as Westerners pull the strings from afar, so to speak, but it still does a good job of presenting meaningful ties with those less fortunate than us.


Forever sign Danica Kleinknecht.

Sasha Nixon and Forever are "thrilled" to confirm the signing of Los Angeles-based director Danica Kleinknecht.

According to their press release, Forever’s new recruit “twists the lemon” with fresh looks at her home state. “Just when you thought every last drop of colour has been wrung out of California”, Forever say, “Danica offers up something that goes deeper, slower, and more romantic”.


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California Almonds
"Do You Almond?"
50s
22 January 2020

This suitably nutty trio of commercials for the Almond Board of California (ABC) shows what a handful of seeds can do for snackers across the UK, namely leaving onlookers and woodland creatures alike speechless.

Each feat of derring-do - a perfect life drawing, a claw machine heist, and a preternatural display of wood chopping - prompts the all-important question, “Do you almond?” Needless to say, it’s best coming from an animatronic squirrel.

At 15” each, none of director Brad Lubin’s ads outstay their welcome either. This suits the brand’s bite-sized philosophy well, and ultimately proves what can be achieved in small doses. An amusing source of fibre and protein.


Volvo
"The Birdman"
7 mins 57s
21 January 2020

Volvo’s latest collaboration with Sky Atlantic focuses on Professor Carl G. Jones - conservation biologist, Welshman, and saviour of the Mauritius kestrel, among others. He is, for lack of a better name, the Birdman.

Directing duo D.A.R.Y.L.’s eight-minute film relives Jones’s first trip to Mauritius during the 1970s, as he tries to save the aforementioned bird of prey from extinction. Despite significant gains, there are casualties along the way.

It makes Jones’s’ eventual success all the more appreciable, however, and his belief that there is “tremendous hope for the future” is compounded by some beautiful photography and location work. You can tell Volvo sorely want their name praised to the hilt by environmental groups, too.


NHS
"Help Us Help You"
30s
23 January 2020

With an already-overstretched health service and a new plague looming on the horizon, this NHS ad encouraging people to visit their local pharmacist couldn't have been released at a more appropriate time. Director Will Clark ensures each mundane scenario reaches a melodramatic crescendo with relish, as minor sniffles and earaches are given the emergency treatment.

It's a neat way to remind the public that, while their minor health concerns may be vitally important to them, they're not necessarily worth a trip to A&E. Furthermore, it taps into that very British fear of overreacting in any given situation, adding another layer to this cautionary tale on steroids.


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On This Day
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Gatorade
"Float"
45s
25 Jan 2010
Slow motion is combined with a sound track which samples a famous utterance of Muhammad Ali to brilliant effect in this American commercial for the sports drink which was directed by Smuggler's Adam Berg.

Anger Management
"Charlie Sheen's 24th Chance"
30s
25 Jan 2013
Charlie Sheen has managed to turn his infamous public meltdown into good business through his involvement in the successful comedy series Anger Management. Here, he shamelessly trades on aspects of his inglorious self-immolation by surviving a 'train wreck' while the soundtrack reminds us of claims he made about his blood.

HSE
"Johnny"
50s
25 Jan 2013
This amusing Irish film promoting the use of condoms depicts a series of vignettes in which there's a sudden urgent need for the protection afforded by the invaluable rubberwear. The humour on display suggests that Irish attitudes towards contraceptives have matured considerably in recent years.

Anti Smoking
"Us v Them"
80s
25 Jan 2015
Oooh... what a cleverly creepy and controversial ad this is for the Anti Smoking lobby. An executive sits in a shadowy office, lit like a late Rembrandt, and as he addresses the camera directly ahead we become aware that this is a dangerous man; one who will stop at nothing to get what he wants. And what he wants is youth.

Alzheimer's Research UK
"Share The Orange"
90s
25 Jan 2016
Christopher Eccleston fronts this appeal from the charity Alzheimer's Reseach UK, and an excellent choice he makes too. His sincerity really informs the spot, doing justice to what is a simple but extremely effective concept. We shouldn't accept that dementia is part of ageing, we're told - it's a disease we can conquer; and the use of an orange to illustrate what happens is powerful indeed.

Tiger Beer
"Wok"
60s
25 Jan 2016
Feeling peckish? Tiger Beer's vivid ode to the wok will leave you hankering for street food as the brand celebrates Asian cuisine and its cooking vessel of choice. "Forged in fire to bathe in flame", the wok is granted almost mythological status by the VO. It becomes a holder of tradition, as vital to the recipe as any ingredient. When hungry citizens begin to flood Asia's streets and marketplaces at night, these cooks bring the heat.

Beer52
"Beer Buddy"
78s
25 Jan 2017
Edinburgh-based craft beer delivery service Beer52 have invented a drinking buddy for any subscriber feeling a bit lonely when they receive their monthly crate of bevvies. If you need a pal, Beer Buddy is here for you. The guy knows everything there is to know about beer, but he struggles to get anybody to stick around long enough to share his passion because, let's face it, he's a bit desperate.

Zelle
"How Money Moves"
60s
25 Jan 2018
Daveed Diggs - actor, musician, and Tony award-winning star of the pop culture phenomenon Hamilton - stars in this excellent ad for money transfer app Zelle. The entertaining film sees Diggs and a diverse cast of characters rap about the service, with a self-conscious humour which makes the action as un-coolly cool as possible. We like his jumper, too.

Tesco
"Light Bulb"
20s
25 Jan 2005
Jimmy Nail voices latest in the excellentlly simple series of ads for the supermarket giant. Here they are upfront about wanting us to buy our light bulbs from them - then they explain that the "whats" are 60W and the "whys" are 18p per light bulb.

Milk
"Teenage Attributes"
30s
25 Jan 2006
Follow-up to last week's ad has an older group of children talking about what they find attractive about the opposite sex. The reasoning might be slightly more informed than in the previous ad but it will still make many squirm with embarrassment at the memory of holding similar misconceptions.

Maxim
"Snog"
30s
25 Jan 2006
Post-watershed version of last year's ad for Maxim has the two men who want rid of their girlfriends really going for it with an authentic snog. Their suitably shocked girlfriends vacate enabling the duo to fantasise about the girls in the magazine. Hmmm.

Leonard Cheshire Disability
"Stick"
30s
25 Jan 2008
More from the creature comforts campaign for Leonard Cheshire has a stick insect talking about the feelings his need to use a walking stick provoked. This is a more upbeat film than some of the others and this makes the technique a much better fit.

Burger King
"Geoff From Quiz Night"
10s
25 Jan 2010
A short version of the new ad for Burger King has Geoff priming himself for a quick getaway once he's ordered his food from the fast food restaurant. Once again, his plan is undermined when he's recognized by someone who knows him from Quiz Night.

Burger King
"Geoff"
20s
25 Jan 2010
Another exploration of the idea that you'll feel as though you've robbed Burger King because their food is so inexpensive. A man identified as Geoff uses Tom Cruise's Mission impossible kit to ensure a quick getaway after he has bought some of their offerings.

Jaguar
"Awards"
30s
25 Jan 2010
We get the feeling that Jaguar wouldn't mind at all if we thought Jeremy Clarkson had provided the voice for this commercial. Using the Top Gear presenter's familiar intonation, it's revealed that the company will have to give back some awards if their car isn't the best.

DVLA
"Doleful Car"
30s
25 Jan 2010
A woman voices the thoughts of a doleful yellow sports car as it explains how it feels unloved because its owner has neglected to update its road tax. Apparently, it used to be a big part of his life but, alas, no more and soon it may be headed for the scrapheap.

Target
"Car Odor"
30s
25 Jan 2010
An English-accented fellow speaks authoritatively about his mission to identify strange car odours in this quirky American ad for the general-purpose retailer. A model car is split in two to reveal a range of cleaning goods available from Target.

McDonald's
"Morning Confusion"
30s
25 Jan 2010
While it's a little unconvincing to suggest that McDonald's is the solution to early morning tiredness, this commercial makes this claim with sufficient charm to enable us to overlook this. Various people suffer minor mishaps resulting from early morning confusion.

Qatar Airways
"Five Star"
30s
25 Jan 2010
This impressively filmed commercial radiates the idea of luxury from its every pore. Even the voiceover confers a comforting layer of affluence upon proceedings as it is explained how the airline will do everything it can to pamper us... if we can afford it.

Kellogg's Nutri Grain Bars
"Unofficial"
40s
25 Jan 2010
In this Irish ad, a series of sporting situations segue from one to the next seamlessly in the dark. The advertised cereal bar is the "official snack" of the Irish rugby team but can be enjoyed unofficially by everyone else as well.

Target
"Bangs"
30s
25 Jan 2010
Another in this engaging series featuring a quirky chap who looks like he teaches English at an exclusive Ivy League college. In this ad, he talks about products you may find useful while your fringe is growing out (or your 'bangs' to use his terminology).

Target
"Twenty Bucks"
30s
25 Jan 2010
Another in this engaging series featuring a quirky chap who looks like he teaches English at an exclusive Ivy League college where he secretly hopes that all the female students will have a crush on him. Here, he suggests what we can do with $20 we've found.

Sade
"Soldier Of Love"
5 mins
25 Jan 2010
Bloody hell, has someone dug up Blue Peter's 1980s Time Capsule? And, if so, did some overly cheerful children's TV presenter bury Sade with Neil Tennant's voice by mistake? Nice video... shame about the voice which seems to have been wrecked by all that time underground.

Heineken
"The Up And Under"
30s
25 Jan 2010
This Irish commercial depicts the difficulty of getting three full pints of beer from the bar to your table in a crowded pub. The protagonist uses the 'up and under' technique which is appropriate as he and his pals are watching rugby. The choice of music is excellent.

Heineken
"The Intercept"
30s
25 Jan 2010
Another commercial in this excellent Irish series for Heineken shows a man intercepting a pint of beer intended for someone else. He seems to take particular pleasure in it because he didn't favour it... something to which anyone can relate.

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