David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • Beast of friends.Toilet paper and cuddly mascots seem to go arm in arm. Andrex have their puppy; Cushelle has a CG koala; now Lotus unleash an animatronic yeti.
    • The May 2017 CraftWorks PodcastThe morning after the May 2017 CraftWorks show, 76 director Alan Friel and Just So's Matt Diegan joined DAVID to pick through the bones.
    • Cameraman and boy.Perhaps wary of smartphones stealing their thunder, Canon wish to reassert their photography credentials.
    • Olly Jennings joins PartizanPartizan have signed up-and-coming director Olly Jennings to their UK roster.
    • Training days.The grind of pre-season is laid bare in this engrossing Sky Sports promo.
    • Getting the snipAple show their iPhone 7's portrait feature single-handedly turning a sleepy barber shop into a thriving business.
    • Dax Martinez-Vargas gets down and Dirty.American filmmaker and commercial director Dax Martinez-Vargas crosses the Atlantic to join Dirty Films.
    • A squad of millions.With the British and Irish Lions preparing for this summer’s tour of New Zealand, this potent Sky Sports promo reveals there will be no respite from their hosts.
    • A Room of One's OwnTo mark their fiftieth year in existence, homeless charity Crisis are mobilising to make themselves obsolete.
    • Blind date.Young love takes a sinister turn in this compelling Movistar commercial.
    • Sweet DreamsThis artfully-constructed ad for Nytol depicts the battle to go to sleep via a literal war room in Cliff's head.
    • Time for a ChangeThe Yorkshire Building Society present a wealth of reasons to move house in these entertaining online spots.
    • Electric light orchestra.Blips, bleeps, and Beethoven inform this melodic promo for Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit.

CRAFTWORKS

Wednesday, 17th May.
Betwen 2.30pm and 4.30pm.

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

Tickets: £20 plus VAT.

● Land Rover.

● Just So's Postcards.

● Alan Friel.

● Paul Burke.

TICKETS AND DETAILS HERE.


Nytol
"Say Good Nytol"
30s
16 May 2017

This artfully-constructed ad for Nytol depicts the battle to go to sleep via a literal war room in Cliff's head, as he lies awake worrying about how much time he has left to kip. It's a familiar scenario for anybody who finds themselves staring at the alarm clock in the wee small hours, the vicious cycle of worrying about how long it is until we have to get up for work.

The war room here is executed well, with vintage computers and giant alarm clock numbers standing out starkly against the dark background. The moment when the entire war council begin counting sheep along with Cliff is an excellent comedy beat, delivered with great timing.

This is impressive stuff from Lucky Generals and directing duo Us, sure to appeal to any insomniac who identifies with Cliff's urge to drug himself into submission just so he doesn't have to count any more bloody sheep. Sweet dreams, Cliff.

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Yorkshire Building Society
"Reasons to Move"
57s
16 May 2017

The Yorkshire Building Society present a wealth of reasons to move house in these entertaining online spots, directed by Fogg. A couple endure the indignities of living in the wrong house - the cramped garden, annoying neighbourhood dog, obsessed neighbour who seems ready to go full-on Single White Female - with a stoicism which only heightens the pay-off.

We enjoy the unquestioning way these scenarios are presented. There's no explanation how the tiny dog conquered the bloke, or whether the guy has just crumbled under the weight of inevitability and laid down in surrender - we only see the victorious face-licking. It's an understated approach which fits the subject matter well: anybody can see why this couple needs to move.

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Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit
"Ode to Joy(stick)"
46s
16 May 2017

Blips, bleeps, and Beethoven inform this melodic promo for Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit. The comedian and video game enthusiast conducts a chiptune symphony to mark the show’s latest series. It’s Ludwig van, but not as we know it.

O’Briain gets a retro tune out of his unorthodox orchestra. Pixels dot the screen as these virtuoso gamers register high scores and bum notes. Featured console paraphernalia includes virtual reality headsets, light guns, and Guitar Hero’s axe-shaped controller.

There’s also a fun nod to that most embarrassing gaming faux pas: pressing ‘pause’ by mistake. Such details suggest the programme is geared towards casual and competitive gamers alike, while O’Briain’s presence should pique wider interest.

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nolax
"The Idea"
75s
16 May 2017

This visceral compilation of imagery by Ben Strebel forms a heady mixture which fills us with a desire to know more about Swiss brand nolax... and that's mission accomplished by our reckoning.

A swift investigation uncovers a company which 'sows ideas and visions, lets them sprout, and nurtures them to market'... which makes them sound suspiciously like a never-ending marketing seminar... but never mind!

We're going to overlook this and concentrate instead on the collection of thrills and spills which persuaded us to look up the company in the first place. Strebel and his editor Marko Strihic have given this a really striking vibe and the director is clearly one to watch.

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Nike
"Cape Town Course"
1 min 40s
15 May 2017

From Gary Player to modern players like Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen, South Africa’s golfing lineage is impressive. Here, Nike give a platform to the next generation… and there’s not a green in sight.

Nothing stops these golfers getting into the swing of things. Every surface becomes a tee, an imaginary flag added to every vista. Improvisation and exploration are encouraged and the sport’s officious tendencies are hit long.

The blend of urban and natural scenery produces some impressive shots in more ways than one. While the technique is evident, there’s also a swashbuckling feel to their play - lost balls be damned.

It’s an intriguing and forward-thinking slant on a sport which has proved resistant to change. As golf now ponders rule changes and other tweaks, this ad suggests the game is in safe hands down Cape Town way.

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THE ADS THAT GOT AWAY
May 22nd - 6.30pm
Curzon Soho.
Tickets - £25 each.


On This Day

Kellogg's Crunchy Nut
"Get Home"
30s
22 May 2006
No-one can resist the lure of Crunchy Nut Corn Flakes and a reporter tells us about the increasing phenomenon of people hurrying home in dramatic fashion to enjoy a bowl as we see an unlikely looking thrill seeker using a trapeze to make her way home in double quick time.

Carling Black Label
"Squirrel"
50s
22 May 2007
A classic commercial from the late 1980s featuring an intrepid squirrel who makes his way across an assault course in order to get to some nuts. One owl turns to the other and utters one of advertising's greatest lines: "I bet he drinks Carling Black Label".

Carling Black Label
"Dambusters"
60s
22 May 2007
A classic Carling Black Label ad from the 1980s used the iconic Dambusters movie as the basis for a brilliant spoof. Two RAF pilots are aiming to destroy the dam with Barnes Wallis's bouncing bomb but haven't reckoned on the goalkeeping talents of a German guard.

Levi's 501s
"Creek"
90s
22 May 2007
A classic commercial from 1994 shot in black and white by Vaughan (Arnell) & Anthea (Benton) it captures a moment of lost innocence as a young woman and her younger sister spy on a man in a creek who appears to be naked. Stiltskin provide the rocky music as he emerges from the water.

Foot Locker
"Sneaker Mastermind"
45s
22 May 2010
This kinky piece of advertising has an erotic start before taking a turn that some of you will feel enhances the eroticism and others less so... depending on your predilections. A man is able to identify individual trainers by the feel of them as they slap across his arse.

VW Vans
"God Only Knows"
60s
22 May 2011
VW draws on its legacy as the provider of archetypal hippie transport in this attractively filmed ad for its commercial vehicles range. The Beach Boys track God Only Knows plays as various owners demonstrate their love for the iconic vans.

Hollyoaks
"Savage Party"
60s
22 May 2012
This beautiful minute-long trail for Hollyoaks is so impressive that DAVID might be tempted to watch the programme if it weren't for the fact that he's previously seen the programme. It's made to look as though the cast of the daily soap will be performing an avant garde version of A Midsummer's Night Dream. They won't.

Red Cross
"Babysitters"
90s
22 May 2013
Pointing out the pitfalls of employing amateur-level babysitters, this depicts a range of increasingly disastrous and hilarious scenarios ranging from dog-shaving to house-fires ("...the good news is, your house is going to be on TV tonight!") and explains how the Red Cross can help teens not to be that babysitter.

Williams Syndrome
"Nephew"
2 mins 30s
22 May 2016
The tone of this excellent awareness film for Williams Syndrome is set in the first moments when actor Mathew Baynton (who also wrote and co-directed this film) is asked "How's James Corden?" in lieu of an enquiry into his own well-being. It's not just funny, it serves as a metaphor for the difficulty of raising awareness of little-known ailments.

O2
"Downloads"
20s
22 May 2006
Neat post script to last week's spectacular has the bubble representing the music downloads that are available to customers on the network. The bubble bounces rhythmically off a tram in time with the music the protagonist is presumably listening o on his headphones.

Robinsons Cordials
"Snapper Tim"
30s
22 May 2006
Tim Henman is asked by a Japanese couple to take a photo of them as he queues to enter Wimbledon while, symbolically, perhaps this enables Andy Murray to slip in ahead of him. The Scottish youngster has supplanted Henman as the man most likely to give provide false hope and now he is appearing alongside his hero.

Film 4
"Leslie Phillips"
80s
22 May 2007
82 year old actor Leslie Phillips shows a more serious side than his 'ding dong' persona normally allows us to see as he explains what it was like working with Peter O'Toole on Venus. Plainly, his fellow veteran is a bit difficult but Phillips feels his stature helped him cope with O'Toole's awkwardness.

Oasis
"Wildebeest"
30s
22 May 2007
In the style of a nature documentary we hear how herds of wildebeest have made their way across the plains to reach the waterhole. Many didn't make it but that doesn't stop those that do from complaining about the water when they get there. The brand spokesman is magicked in to suggest Oasis instead.

Lynx
"Stay Focused"
30s
22 May 2008
A man with a wandering eye is constantly disappointing women by checking to see if his armpits are dry. Only when he discovered the advertised product is he able to give up his embarrassing habit and begin to flirt more freely. Another strange contribution to the Lynx canon from the Argentine outfit VegaOlmosPonce.

ITV
"Euro 2008"
30s
22 May 2008
ITV's Euro 2008 salvo shows how our love affair with football is to be challenged by the absence of British teams in this summer's tournament. It's an amusing idea... but there is a slight flaw in the logic. This man being cheered up by watching Euro 2008 is like an abandoned husband watching his wife have sex with her new beau.

Feel Good Drinks
"Gnomes"
30s
22 May 2009
This cute confection for the natural drink has animated gnomes crushing fruit demonstrating what a healthy concoction it must be. There's a mystery though... just who is Debbie? At the end, one of the gnomes holds up a placard declaring love for her.

Old Speckled Hen
"Prime Time On Dave Sponsorship"
40s
22 May 2010
One of a series of bumper collections advertising Old Speckled Hen's sponsorship of prime time programming on Dave. In each case back projection has been used to place the fox in an unusual situation and Griff Rhys Jones then gives sardonic voice to the fox.

Old Speckled Hen
"Prime Time On Dave Sponsorship"
40s
22 May 2010
One of a series of bumper collections advertising Old Speckled Hen's sponsorship of prime time programming on Dave. In each case back projection has been used to place the fox in an unusual situation and Griff Rhys Jones then gives sardonic voice to the fox.

T-Mobile
"Tino"
30s
22 May 2010
Tino's invitation to his mates to come around for a football gaming night in is pretty hilarious. The craftily cheap-looking effects work particularly well in this execution and Tino's night looks like a lot of fun.

Bombardier
"Bang On"
30s
22 May 2011
Rik Mayall in the television version of the new beer ad that stunned DAVID's audience last week. This one is a lot better... well, it's around a minute and half better, in any case. The other film was ninety seconds longer than this.

McDonald's
"New York"
30s
22 May 2012
The English village given an American makeover in previous weeks has once again been invaded by a team of production designers. This time, it's designed to look a little like New York but, as before, the essential Englishness continues to shine through.

IKEA
"Sleep"
30s
22 May 2012
This Swedish commercial uses slow motion and a bit of jiggery pokery to show how everything can fall into place when you buy your furniture from Ikea. It's beautifully done and the decision to use a jaunty piece of classical music adds to the overall effect. Neat work by a directorial duo now represented by Believe Media.

EDF Energy
"Race"
30s
22 May 2012
The cute little blob is back and this time she's fantasising about taking part in the 100m at the Olympics. But clearly her powers of concentration are not great and her fantasy starts to come apart... her fellow athletes become dancers and before long it's all about securing tickets to watch rather than taking part.

Waitrose
"Water Cress"
40s
22 May 2013
So now you know. Not only is Posh Supermarket's watercress superior to other watercress; so is the water it's grown in. As usual, this is sumptuously shot: you can almost taste the cold, clear, flinty spring and smell the peppery leaves of the aforementioned product. Never again will you buy the slimy yellowing stuff found at lesser supermarkets.

Compare The Market
"Coronation Street Bumpers"
40s
22 May 2013
Another collection of amiably daft bumpers advertising Compare The Market's sponsorship of Coronation Street. Given the popularity of this campaign, it's not surprising that cuddly toys have become a marketable entity in their own right... and so long as it continues to boost the core activity, it must be a great bonus for the advertised service.

On This Day

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