David Reviews

 It's the work, stupid.

Latest Work
    • The non-friction section.Framing the use of lube as a tool of female liberation is a canny move in this ad for Durex.
    • Teemu Niukkanen is Bootleg material.Bootleg Films have tapped Finnish director and comedy writer Teemu Niukkanen to join their TVC roster.
    • Welcome to the Ozarks.True Detective's opening titles for season three draws from the show's Ozark setting and shifting timeline to produce something intoxicating.
    • All new CraftWorks - February 11th.Our live show CraftWorks is being relaunched at a new venue and with new sponsors.
    • Walking on AirQatar Airways encourage their passengers to see the world differently with this charming film.
    • Where The Heart IsNatWest have finally cracked it with this winning ad, which depicts the seemingly endless run-up to moving house.
    • Stitch champion Ben Corfield.Stitch have promoted Homespun editor Ben Corfield to their main roster.
    • Snap me if you can.This fun Mercedes ad from down under gives hope to privacy-obsessed celebrities everywhere.
    • Papaya launch Young Directors CompetitionPapaya Films have launched the sixth edition of their Young Directors Competition.
    • Electrifying ExperienceKeen to address a recent apprenticeship slump, this 60" commercial from the Department for Education aims to reinforce the benefits of on-the-job training.
    • Ham in love.This short film tells the surprisingly touching story of a man and his pig – with some unexpected twists and turns.
    • NSFP (Not Safe For Plates)'Food porn' takes on a whole new meaning in this ribald short film from Seed Animation.
    • The Man in ChargeITV explore character archetypes in an excellent new series of ads for their drama output.
    • Love at first sight.Adland's pantheon of bathrobe-clad blokes receives a new addition courtesy of this dulcet Wren commercial.


We have great news for fans of CraftWorks. 2019 will see it return in a multitude of different formats.

These will include several shows at BAFTA in London - the first being on Monday, February 11th.

Watch this space for further announcements.

There are sponsorship opportunites associated with its return, please contact Jason Stone on 0141 776 7766 if you'd like to know more.

Short Films
"Edmund the Magnificent"
14 mins
18 January 2019

Narrated by Ian McKellan, this short film tells the surprisingly touching story of a man and his pig – with some unexpected twists and turns. Depressed by his failing business, a farmer (David Bradley) buys a male pig to raise for breeding purposes... only to discover the boar's tastes run differently than expected.

There's plenty to chew on here, with allegory deftly nestled amongst the laughs. When the pig's lack of interest in sows sparks some long-buried feelings in the farmer he takes drastic measures – which are thwarted when Edmund the Magnificent lives up to his name.

Such moments are well handled by Bradley and his porcine co-star, while director/writer Ockrent's lyrical script and McKellan's canny delivery ensure a distinctly modern fable. As for the final reveal, prepare for a violent dose of the warm 'n' fuzzies.

Short Films
17 January 2019

When we talk about 'food porn' at DAVID, we're usually referring to loving shots of velvety gravy caressing steaming meat, with a breathless voiceover oozing myriad 'luxurious' superlatives for good measure. This short film from Seed Animation, however, gives the phrase a whole new - and much more literal - meaning.

To describe this montage of frisky food as suggestive would be selling it short - there are self-saucing salads, flashing fajitas, and buxom burgers aplenty, each rendered in a different animated style. Thanks to polished visuals and an appropriately sleazy soundtrack, viewers may never look at a slice of pizza quite the same way again.

"The Patriarch"
17 January 2019

ITV explore character archetypes in an excellent new series of ads for their drama output. This outing focuses on the patriarch - head of the family, narrative father, old man, or whatever takes your fancy. He's not on the front lines, he is the line, and agency Uncommon's script explains the trope to a tee.

The film itself is cleverly crafted, ticking off boxes on the dramatic checklist one by one: icy grade, flaming car, mysterious location, and assassins closing in on all sides. Roger Allam's accompanying speech (in his guise as Detective Inspector Fred Thursday) is extremely well performed, giving the audience a visceral emotional reaction to the ambiguous finale.

"How Deep Is Your Love?"
16 January 2019

Adland's pantheon of bathrobe-clad blokes (see Tesco Mobile and Taylors of Harrogate, to name but a few) receives a new addition courtesy of this dulcet Wren commercial. Building on 2018's ‘Our Heart and Soul' campaign, this latest film sees a man fall head over heels with his new fittings before they've even left the warehouse.

His infatuation is shot through a halcyon filter of soft focus and mood lighting, although the Bee Gees' ‘How Deep is Your Love?' ensures the tone is firmly tongue-in-cheek. The end result is a frothy yet effective reminder of the brand's affection for their craft - one bookended by a nice mug gag.

Short Films
"Tam Tam - Outside The Lines"
5 mins 50s
13 January 2019

This poignant short film looks at the plight of Italians of African descent who are effectively stateless because of Italy's refusal to automatically recognise as citizens those who are born there. It examines this through the prism of a basketball team who were not allowed to participate in a local league because of the players' status.

It's a beautifully measured little documentary, allowing the broader injustices to speak for themselves by concentrating on the story of how their coach fought for them to be given the right to play in the league. The narrator is a 14 year old boy called Wisdon who is part of the team and his young voice already sounds weary from the prejudice which surrounds him.

Director Greg Hackett recognised that this small story was representative of the increasing hostility towards refugees throughout Europe - especially those whose skin is a different colour, and he set out to tell the story in a highly creditable effort to make a difference.


Five Star Work
(1-25 of 25)

"Ladies, Let's Lube"
22 Jan 2019
As society begins to ever-so-slowly unclench about the concept of people having sex and actually enjoying it, Durex have evolved into a brand on the front lines of trying to erode these taboos just a little bit faster. So it should be no surprise that their latest ad is funny, forthright, and conspicuously free of euphemism.

Qatar Airways
"A World Like Never Before"
21 Jan 2019
Qatar Airways encourage their passengers to see the world differently with this charming film. Blending animation, physical sets, and live action, director Ben Scott draws us into a heightened, whimsical version of reality. Evoking the golden age of musicals, an orchestral soundtrack accompanies one family's adventures across the globe.

"The Move"
21 Jan 2019
NatWest have been thinking deeply about finance for a long time, often with confusing results. However, the compulsive ponderers seem to have finally cracked it with this winning ad, which depicts the seemingly endless run-up to moving house. The highs and lows of house hunting are detailed nicely, from overenthusiastic estate agents to endless queues at a desirable property.

John Lewis
"Making The Boy and the Piano"
3 mins 45s
21 Jan 2019
This enlightening behind-the-scenes documentary underlines the craftsmanship required to bring the John Lewis 2018 Christmas ad to life. Compiled by post house MPC, the film shows how painstaking rendering and CG nous helped capture Elton John throughout the ages, even down to the slightest facial twitch.

"Eat Dust"
18 Jan 2019
This fun Mercedes ad from down under gives hope to privacy-obsessed celebrities everywhere, as an X-Class V6 pick-up attempts to outrun a paparazzi hoard. Needless to say, the latter won't give up without a fight. The ensuing chase showcases the truck's mettle as it navigates tarmac, water, and dirt. If only its pursuers could demonstrate such versatility...

"The Patriarch"
17 Jan 2019
ITV explore character archetypes in an excellent new series of ads for their drama programming. This outing focuses on The Patriarch - head of the family, narrative father, old man, etc. The film is cleverly crafted, ticking off boxes on the dramatic checklist one by one: icy grade, flaming car, mysterious location, and assassins closing in on all sides.

"The Nightclub"
16 Jan 2019
A night club designed for sleeping - no, it's not the latest Millennial fad, it's the premise of this appealingly quirky ad for IKEA. The furniture giant have tapped Juan Cabral to draw attention to their extensive range of bedroom accessories. The film puts an entirely different, ahem, spin on the nightly routine, as a diverse group of revellers snuggle up into beds arranged around a trendy club.

New York Times
"The Truth Is Worth It: Resolve"
2 mins
16 Jan 2019
This excellent ad for the New York Times follows in the footsteps of previous ads, but its length enables us to appreciate in full the sheer effort that goes into producing a story. It focuses on the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya. A journalist who manages to get into Myanmar is closely chaperoned, and fed the government's line, but manages to hear the truth too.

"We Believe"
1 min 50s
15 Jan 2019
Such are the times we live in that Gillette has received significant backlash for its new slogan, swapping ‘The best a man can get' for 'The best a man can be'. One might think that espousing such virtues as not bullying or assaulting others would be beyond reproach... but here we are. Still, at least Kim Gehrig's film offers a glimmer of hope.

"Alien Problems"
15 Jan 2019
A welcome return for Babbel's resident spokes-alien finds Alexi in a spot of bother: he can't imagine learning a new language quickly enough to greet the neighbours or regale dinner party guests with a droll anecdote. Crippled by uncertainty, the tongue-tied being seems doomed to a misunderstood spell on Earth - and that's where the advertised learning app comes in.

"Like a Bosch"
15 Jan 2019
Bosch breathe new life into an old meme with this entertaining ad, which draws attention to their range of integrated smart products. From controlling the heating from his phone to turning the oven off and on remotely, the protagonist promises to carry out his daily tasks - you guessed it - "like a Bosch".

Truth Project
"Speech Bubbles"
14 Jan 2019
The Truth Project has released this hard-hitting ad about speaking out against sexual abuse. MullenLowe's quiet film carries a potent sense of foreboding, as it flits between scenes with one common thread: blank speech bubbles above characters' heads. It's a striking effect, and one which makes the organisation's message extremely clear.

"Color Flood"
12 Jan 2019
Apple encourage customers to fully embrace colour with this visually arresting ad. Boasting a sizeable cast of substantial with Prague as their playground, it's yet another memorable outing for the tech giant. Directed by Rupert Sanders, the tightly-choreographed film has a surreal feel as waves of brightly-coloured jumpsuits create moving works of art.

11 Jan 2019
This clever ad for domestic violence charity Refuge offers a visceral demonstration of how a relationship can turn upside down. A woman relates her excitement about spending Christmas with her partner to the camera, only for the tone to shift dramatically when the script is reversed. Impactful and compellingly executed.

Family Action
11 Jan 2019
Support group Family Action make the demons we face real in this compelling commercial. A series of vignettes show seemingly happy families going about their lives - albeit with something unusual lurking close by. It's only after a second glance that we understand the variety of monsters haunting them - stress, post-natal depression, and alcoholism.

Road Safety (Republic of Ireland)
"Noel Clancy"
10 Jan 2019
A poignant outing from Ireland's road safety campaign highlights a little-mentioned risk of the road: unaccompanied learner drivers. Focusing on Noel Clancy's tragic story, it reminds viewers that there are issues beyond drunk and distracted driving which need to be addressed just as pointedly.

"Famous Cars"
9 Jan 2019
Supermarket chain Walmart enlists some of the most famous vehicles in pop culture to draw attention to their new pickup shopping service. From the Batmobile to the Mystery Machine, the ad offers blink and you'll miss it reminders of iconic transportation - as a wealth of characters grab their groceries on the go.

"Frozen Moments 2019"
8 Jan 2019
US TV network HLN (formerly known as Headline News) is launching a range of original programming - with much of it capitalizing on the rapidly expanding true crime pop culture boom. This accompanying ad presents a facsimile of moments which give a flavour of the upcoming shows, accompanied by an atmospheric version of Simon and Garfunkel's 'Scarborough Fair'.

Double Check
9 Jan 2019
More conscientious failure from Brexit campaigners Double Check as the second-referendum backers pit husband and wife against a faulty plug. Like previous ads in this wry series, common sense is hard to come by - hence why a devil-may-care attitude towards the mains results in a nasty electric shock for hubby.

Center Parcs
"I Am Dad"
8 Jan 2019
Center Parcs frame themselves as a seat of pastoral liberation in this mellow 60" ad, which kicks off a new campaign for the forest-centric holiday brand. Aimed at viewers who feel their work-life balance is out of whack, the film charts the exploits of Dave Parson - and who he isn't at the weekend. an attractive proposition, especially for those sensitive to the January blues.

Double Check
8 Jan 2019
Second-Brexit-referendum supporters Double Check riff on a holiday staple in this wry 30" film, as a couple ponder whether to ensure their passports are packed before they leave for the airport. The woman thinks it's worth a look; her partner simply replies: "Let's just leave". After all, what's the worst that could happen?

Double Check
8 Jan 2019
Ahh, Brexit. You have to laugh don't you? Or question reality on an hourly basis. For those in the former camp, this ad from second-referendum backers Double Check offers a droll but pointed take on our current political malaise. Set well away from negotiation tables and toxic debate chambers, the ad depicts a couple with a dilemma: check upstairs to see if the hair straighteners are switched off, or walk on and risk an inferno.

1 min 55s
4 Jan 2019
This touching commercial for German supermarket Penny reminds us that Christmas needn't be a spending contest. The accompanying visuals are charmingly animated, as the film charts a mother's struggle to provide everything her child could want while balancing a tight budget. Just when we thought we were finally burnt out on the spirit of the season.

Thomas Cook
"Different Beds"
5 Jan 2019
This is a very curious conceit... but it works. The ad introduces us to a man with a very unusual problem: every time he goes to sleep, he has no idea where he'll wake up. Now, you may be thinking: that was me in my 20s - but, no, not like that. Or you may be thinking - as this is an ad for Thomas Cook - perhaps it's this fellow's job to test out different resorts or something. But, no, it's not that either.

Army Recruitment
"Your Resilience"
2 Jan 2019
A young woman has a job at a supermarket and has been tasked with sorting out the trolleys. She is methodical and - for reasons that aren't entirely clear - this gets on the wick of one of her colleagues who abuses her for being 'slow'. This sequence is juxtaposed with footage of her in a very different situation... one where her patience and attention to detail is highly values.

Five Star Work
(1-25 of 25)

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