David Reviews

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

Latest Work
    • What The What?This slick communication suggests style and substance can, on occasion, coexist quite comfortably
    • Cheque it out.As Covid-19 continues to disrupt the financial sector, TD Bank urge customers to party like it’s 1992… and not for the first time, so to speak.
    • Protect our protectors.This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19.
    • All clapped out.Clapping for the NHS aside... let's look at how we respond to Covid calls to arms.
    • Comfort eating.This eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland.
    • A cycle for life.Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.
    • When the stars align.ITV’s big guns are on the case to mark Mental Health Awareness Week 2020.
    • Front Line FacesThere's a second epidemic brewing amidst the chaos of Covid-19: a looming avalanche of mental health problems.
    • Life: InsideThe barbarity of the American prison system is widely documented, but Covid-19 has thrown its issues into stark relief.
    • Fear of the UnknownThe prospect of contracting Covid-19 is scary for everyone, but those with pre-existing conditions have an extra layer of worry.
    • Brick shift.This Lego ad provides a welcome jolt to the system amidst a glut of commercials that are well-meaning but samey by necessity.

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PPE for Healthcare Workers
"Letter To My Unborn Child"
90s
21 May 2020

This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19.

Dr Meenal Viz and Dr Nishant Joshi are launching a legal challenge to the government's guidance because, contrary to the claims of Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock, the UK government has gone against World Health Organisation (WHO) guidance and failed to provide adequate PPE for the 'heroes' they applaud every Thursday evening.

The film takes the form of a message from Dr Viz to her unborn child. It unflinchingly describes the pandemic and the way it has affected the world, before focusing on the dangers faced by frontline healthcare workers who have consistently been expected to operate without adequate protection.

This is not an abstract danger... many healthcare workers have died in the UK and it is reasonable to assume that this is – in part – because of the government's failure to procure the required PPE.

Having claimed in March that, between pandemic preparation and measures put in place to cover the possibility of a no deal Brexit, there were sufficient stockpiles of PPE to cover all eventualities, our government has twisted and turned every which way in a desperate bid to deny culpability for the shortage.

This included the hurried decision on March 13 to remove Covid 19 from the High Consequence Infectious Diseases (HCID) list on the declared basis that its mortality rate was lower than had been previously thought.

In an edition of BBC's Panorama broadcast on 27 April, sources revealed to the programme makers that Covid-19 was removed from this list because it changed the legal obligation to provide PPE for those treating infected patients.

In our deranged modern politics, many of those who voted for both Brexit and for Boris Johnson's Conservatives at the election last December hide behind the idea that it simply wasn't possible to anticipate the severity of the pandemic. In reality, the UK's government squandered every opportunity to tackle the outbreak effectively, and thousands of people have paid for their ineptitude with their lives... including the healthcare workers whom Dr Viz and Dr Joshi are seeking to protect through their campaign.


Thank-You Care Takers
"Thank-You"
46s
18 May 2020

Let's level with each other, as adult citizens of the world with brains: clapping for the NHS and thanking them is a nice gesture, but it in no way compensates for the fact our health service has been defunded year on year by a government which doesn't seem to care... yet places the blame for failures readily at the NHS's door.

DAVID nearly combusts with frustration every night at 8pm when people set off fireworks to praise the NHS, while front line health workers ask people to please stop calling them heroes and actually make corporations pay taxes so 90 year olds don't get celebrated for tottering out miles for something that shouldn't be a charity.

It's extremely tempting to call those required to work right now heroic. That's the national narrative. And in that spirit this film is lovely and deeply emotive - even under normal circumstances - and outside of its quality of production (which is very high) it raises profound questions about whose stories are told.

Shots of current health workers and vintage footage of doctors and nurses change the tone, however. It's poignant and emotive. One can only hope that the more real-life footage of health workers is shown to the public, the more the 'hero' narrative can be destroyed and real funding can begin.


Short Films
"A Taste of Home"
3 mins 20s
18 May 2020

This warm, eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland. Much has been left behind, but recipes travel.

The proud cast - despite pining for their “land of paradise” back in Western Asia - are determined to ensure dishes like fattah, yabrak, and tabbouleh thrive on the Lancashire coast and beyond. What’s more, they want to share their culinary zeal with others.

It’s a refreshing (and appetising) twist on the refugee narrative. As one interviewee puts it, “We are not coming here just to sit at home and close the door”. Instead, they want to open people’s eyes to Syrian cuisine.


A cycle for life.

Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.

Ogunmokun's original plan was to cycle to France for real but Covid-19 happened and that forced him to adapt his fundraising plans and, instead of enjoying the French countryside as he raised money to extend his friend's life, he's enjoying the slightly more prosaic charms of his Wimbledon home.


CLICK HERE TO READ MORE...

ITV
"The Call"
90s
18 May 2020

Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 arrives slap bang in the middle of a nationwide lockdown, in case you haven’t noticed, and some viewers are now at breaking point. Thank goodness ITV’s big guns are on the case then.

Thanks to the power of video conferencing (and some post-production jiggery pokery), stars including Ant & Dec, Lorraine Kelly, Tinie Tempah, and Holly Willoughby urge viewers to reach out to one another sooner rather than later. After all, some lives may depend on it.

The stakes have gotten significantly higher since the channel’s first ‘Britain Get Talking’ ad in 2019, and this feels like a worthy response to the crisis. The novelty of celeb-heavy Zoom calls may be wearing thin, but it’s a call worth making given the circumstances.


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Five Star Work
(1-25 of 25)

PPE for Healthcare Workers
"Letter To My Unborn Child"
90s
21 May 2020
This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19. Dr Meenal Viz and Dr Nishant Joshi are launching a legal challenge to the government's guidance because, contrary to the claims of Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock, the UK government has gone against World Health Organisation (WHO) guidance and failed to provide adequate PPE for the 'heroes' they applaud every Thursday evening.

ITV
"The Call"
90s
18 May 2020
Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 arrives slap bang in the middle of a nationwide lockdown, in case you haven’t noticed, and some viewers are now at breaking point. Thank goodness ITV’s big guns are on the case then. Thanks to the power of video conferencing (and some post-production jiggery pokery), stars including Ant & Dec, Lorraine Kelly, Tinie Tempah, and Holly Willoughby urge viewers to reach out to one another sooner rather than later.

British Heart Foundation
"Questions"
30s
18 May 2020
The prospect of contracting Covid-19 is scary for everyone, but those with pre-existing conditions have an extra layer of worry to deal with. The omnipresent nature of that concern is skilfully portrayed in this ad for the British Heart Foundation, which addresses the uncertainty and anxiety those with heart conditions are currently living with.

Adobe
"In The Time It Takes To Get There"
11 mins 28s
11 May 2020
This entertaining short film began life as a movie poster created in Adobe Photoshop by graphic design student Sam West. In the hands of director Zach Braff, it’s become an eighteenth-century spin on social media influencers. Naturally. The result is a sumptuous two-hander that sees Florence Pugh’s weary influencer question her choices in life.

Just-Eat
"Snoop"
60s
11 May 2020
Snoop Dogg occupies a unique position in pop culture, simultaneously taken seriously as one of the founders of modern rap music and never taking himself too seriously. So, while other celebrity-fronted commercial songs may come across inevitably as cringey and try-hard, there's nothing to hate about Snoop rapping laconically about pizza.

Lynx Africa
"Hot Since '95"
60s
10 May 2020
There’s more than a whiff of nostalgia to this Lynx commercial, which celebrates twenty-five years of the brand’s Africa body spray. Scored by Apache Indian’s ‘Boom Shack-A-Lak’, the ad brims with hormones and Nineties iconography as the curtain-haired protagonist travels from 1995 to the present day. The lengths teens will go to for a shag, eh?

Cadbury
"This Doesn't Need to End"
90s
4 May 2020
Every cloud has a silver lining, as the old adage goes. Or, if you want a more contemporary spin, every outbreak of Covid-19 has a silver lining… at least according to eternal optimists Cadbury. This sweet commercial celebrates those who’ve taken the ‘spread kindness, not germs’ mantra to heart, whether it’s by ringing a loved one, helping the neighbours, or practising self-care.

Heineken
"Don't You Forget About Me"
60s
26 Apr 2020
Heineken take a leaf out of the Argos catalogue, so to speak, with this well-put together ad featuring the dulcet tones of Simple Minds. Unlike the retailer’s joyful Christmas film, ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me)’ is used in a more, ahem, sober context here. As pubs, bars, and watering holes lie empty around the world, the brand urge Brazilian drinkers in particular not to lose hope.

COVID-19 Urgent Appeal
"Together Cup"
60s
23 Apr 2020
This film is, by far, the most accomplished we've seen made under lockdown conditions. Drawing attention to a fundraising effort which involves sporting stars such as cricketer Ben Stokes and racing driver Lando Norris playing video game FIFA 20, it has a family readying itself for the coming spectacle.

Progressive
"Group Outing"
30s
22 Apr 2020
American insurance outfit Progressive provide an unusual service in their latest ad: training homeowners in the delicate art of not turning into their parents. From using speakerphone in public to offering unsolicited advice in the DIY aisle, it's an amusing look at the ways we find ourselves succumbing to the inevitable.

KLP
"Stories"
60s
20 Apr 2020
This sombre outing from Norwegian pension fund KLP draws attention to the plight of public sector workers during lockdown. As “smouldering uncertainty” grips the capital, nurse Line Fleischer, doctor Lene Finnestad, and kindergarten manager Frode Thorjussen share their thoughts on an increasingly unrecognisable world.

Short Films
"Ever Upward"
2 mins 57s
19 Apr 2020
This affecting film explores how New Yorkers are dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. Unlike many films from this side of the pond which have focused on remaining upbeat and staying positive in quarantine, there's no attempt to shy away from how the current situation is impacting people emotionally.

ITV
"Clap From Our Carers"
2 mins
16 Apr 2020
While there has likely never been more day-to-day discussion about the NHS, it's rare to hear from the workers themselves. ITV change that with this two-minute outing which turns the 'clap for our carers' phenomenon on its head, as medical staff applaud the public for staying at home and allowing them to go about the business of saving lives as effectively as possible.

Uber
"Thank You for Not Riding"
75s
13 Apr 2020
It must be a strange time to be Uber - a business which relies on people going from place to place in a world suddenly thrown into lockdown. However, the company take a responsible position in the current circumstances, thanking users for not riding with them with this touching ad. It's a brave new world, but we are, indeed, still living in it.

Argos
"Spring 2020"
30s
1 Apr 2020
Argos mine yet more laughs from the world of high fashion with this 30” ad starring actress and model Suki Waterhouse. As with previous instalments, however, the real stars are the ‘clothes’. Like a woman pushed over the edge by self-isolation, Waterhouse dons catalogue staples like rugs, lampshades, and even a bedside table as if they were Coco Chanel originals.

Homebase
"Gary the Tortoise"
40s
30 Mar 2020
Homebase’s eerily topical ‘Feels Good to be Home’ campaign returns with this 40” creature feature starring Gary - a CG-enhanced pet tortoise capable of giving any hare a run for its money. Accompanied by the theme to The Adventures of Black Beauty, Gary makes a beeline for his family’s rejuvenated back garden.

Honda
"Power On"
60s
24 Mar 2020
Gardening gets the action movie treatment in this enticing outing for Honda. The brand focus on their range of mowers and other plant-pruning apparatus, as they encourage gardeners with stamina to get stuck in. Given the current circumstances, there may be a lot of passionate new plant-tacklers joining the fray.

Very
"Princess Party (Director's Cut)"
50s
16 Mar 2020
Dragons typically get a bad rap when princesses are involved. Not so in this charming Very.co.uk ad, which handily reinforces the retailer’s progressive approach to playtime. A girl is crestfallen when she’s invited to a ‘princess party’, as she prefers the scaly, fire-breathing type. Luckily, her dad is a supportive bloke… and a demon with a sewing machine.

Ovo
"War on Carbon"
60s
16 Mar 2020
While the threat of climate change may feel like an insurmountable burden when faced with the cold hard facts, there is hope to be had. Ovo focus on that proactive attitude in their latest ad, which addresses the ongoing and essential 'war on carbon'. The film focuses on togetherness and the collective power of humans to enact meaningful change,

Apple AirPods
"Snap"
1 min 57s
13 Mar 2020
This transformative commercial for Apple sees a woman's hectic walk through the city changed into something far more fantastical. Director Kim Gehrig plays with colour to great effect here, switching between neon and day-glo sequences of escapism and muted excursions into the everyday world when reality intrudes.

Nike
"Getting to the Start Line"
60s
13 Mar 2020
A typically motivational outing for Nike focuses on world 200m champion Dina Asher-Smith. The track star discusses her physical and mental preparations for Tokyo 2020, along with the impact training at her familiar home ground has on both her mental and emotional state. This is a lovely insight into the high-performance mindset - regardless of whether the coming Olympics happen on time or not.

Club de Creativos
"Couples"
1 min 46s
12 Mar 2020
Husbands, wives, and significant others bemoan their partners’ choice of career in this droll ad for Spanish advertising union Club de Creativos. Having been left in the lurch once too often, the cast leap at the chance to savage radio silence, talking shop, and umpteen late nights. Naturally, it’s the off-screen lot who earn the organisation’s sympathy.

Gumtree
"A Car Right Up Your Street"
30s
12 Mar 2020
This restrained outing from Gumtree encourages car buyers to look local first. Director Charlotte Regan goes for a light touch here, as a young boy delivers a rhyming script which outlines the brand's unique proposition: vehicles nearby, already tested on local streets, easily accessible for the consumer when time is at a premium.

Direct Line
"Bumblebee"
60s
6 Mar 2020
Direct Line round off their cinematic trilogy with this CG-heavy slice of action starring ‘Transformers’ staple Bumblebee - the world’s most kitted-out Volkswagen Beetle. This time, however, Decepticons are the least of his worries. Like RoboCop and Donatello before him, Bumblebee is compelled to help a policyholder in need.

Fanta
"Idiots Are Amazing"
90s
11 Mar 2020
Since we're living in an unprecedented age of idiots, it seems only right that Fanta pay such everyday daredevils the proper respect. A little stupidity can go a long way, say the brand, as we see a trio of entrepreneurial eejits preparing to risk life and limb for the sake of a laugh. Cue a guy in a giraffe suit, a waterless diver, and a wheelbarrow pilot.

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.