David Reviews

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

GOT FIVE: SWIMMING.
1 September 2021

DAVID swam for the first time in two years yesterday, and his body demands vengeance. In the meantime, here are a few ads and music videos that complement this summer's Olympic and Paralympic waterworks...

Toyota, 'Upstream' (2021)

Toyota take a lyrical dive into the journey of thirteen-time Paralympic gold medalist Jessica Long in this enchanting commercial. Framed around her difficult start in life - adopted as a baby from Siberia with a rare medical condition - the film follows her long road from there to sporting glory.

Director Tarsem (no stranger to water courtesy of Levi's) handles the film's narative with a delicate hand here, allowing understated voiceover performances to shine with genuine emotional resonance. This isn't a story about overcoming disability but rather of becoming oneself, and it's all the stronger for making that significant delineation clear [Syd Briscoe]


giffgaff, 'The Big Swim' (2017)

The representation of freedom in giffgaff's 2017 ad is gloriously over the top. Using a mixture of in-camera effects and CGI techniques, a woman is shown hurtling into the sky and beyond as she steps off a diving board and heads up instead of down.

Calmly ascending through the outer layers of our planet's atmosphere, she passes the International space Station and the moon before boomeranging around Mars and heading home. Her progress is monitored by her concerned husband, with a little help from the boffins whose lab he gate-crashes. [Jason Stone]


Under Armour, 'Michael Phelps' (2016)

A glance at Michael Phelps's CV is enough to make anyone feel as though they're doggy paddling through life. As this brutal, brilliant ad for Under Armour shows, the broadest shoulders in swimming bear a weight that borders on the superhuman.

With his beard and chiselled physique, there is a hint of the beast about Phelps as he hits the gym. Close-ups capture every sinew being stretched to the limit, while the camera has its work cut out keeping up with the man in full flow. Yet the cost of this effort is palpable. [Andrew MacGregor]


Short Film, 'Johanna Under the Ice' (2016)

Having recovered from a biking accident thanks to cold water therapy, Johanna Nordblad embraced what lies below the icy surface by becoming a world record-holding freediver. This entrancing profile from director Ian Derry captures both the alien beauty of an Arctic lake and the human desire to stay in control.

Those of a nervous disposition may feel obliged to look away as her flirtation with a very obvious catastrophe appears to form part of the appeal. Despite swimming just inches below the surface, the thick coating of ice looks like an impenetrable barrier between Nordblad and the world above. [Andrew MacGregor]


Naughty Boy, 'Runnin' (Lose It All)' (2015)

This astonishing promo by Charlie Robins for Naughty Boy's 'Runnin' is a simple tale of boy meets girl. Its key point of difference is that they appear to live underwater... and no matter how hard you look, there's nothing that suggests the action could have possibly been crafted in post.

That's because it's all filmed for real. How? Well, if you're Robins, you ask free-diving world champion Guillaume Nery to play lead male, free-diving champion Alice Mondolo to play his love, and fellow champ and filmmaker Julie Gaultier to collaborate. Everything from the way the pair move - fluid and majestic - to the stunning grade and the sheer clarity of the images leaves us marvelling. [Alice May]


News

BITE SERVE UP A TASTY PROPOSITION

Given the personnel involved, it's inevitable that the Bite Collective – a newly formed film production company – will cause a stir in the realm of food commercials.


JOSHUA H WALKER JOINS THE SWEETSHOP.

The Sweetshop have completed the signing of Joshua H Walker for work in Australia and New Zealand.


EMILY MAYE GOES ROGUE

Photographer-turned-director Emily Maye has joined Rogue for UK representation.


COMMON PEOPLE FILMS WELCOME VIRGIL FERRAGUT.

The strikingly named director Virgil Ferragut has joined Common People Films for commercial representation.


YOU ARE HERE RECRUIT JANE STOCKDALE.

Director, photographer, and sports lover Jane Stockdale is now on the books at You Are Here.


ENVY SECURE EDWIN METTERNICH.

Worldy colourist Edwin Metternich has joined ENVY Advertising after a rewarding freelance stint.


IT'S PRESENCE FOR ROBIN SHAW.

Animation director Robin Shaw is the latest addition to the Presence commercial roster.


INDIA HARRIS SIGNS FOR STICKER STUDIOS.

Whipsmart director India Harris has completed her move to Sticker Studios.


LEE J FORD JOINS PARK VILLAGE

Director Lee J Ford has joined Park Village for representation in the UK and the Netherlands.


CONDUCTOR MEETS CONTROLLER.

The&Partnership Nordics and Swedish electronics retailer Webhallen have developed a game that turns button presses and keystrokes into musical notes.


DARK ENERGY ENLIST DANIEL MUTTON.

Director and photographer Daniel Mutton has joined Dark Energy for commercial representation.


MILO BLAKE HEADS TO SPINDLE

Spindle have signed acclaimed music promo director Milo Blake to their roster.


ANDY BIDDLE AND ADEENA GRUBB UNITE AT BLINKINK.

Stop-motion animators Andy Biddle and Adeena Grubb are Blinkink’s newest directing duo.


NEXUS STUDIOS SIGN ENCYCLOPEDIA PICTURA

Nexus Studios have signed innovative filmmaking collective Encyclopedia Pictura to their roster.


FAH MERRAZ AND AIKA MIYAKE JOIN THE QUARRY.

Two editors that have enjoyed a "meteoric rise" through the industry ranks have joined The Quarry for representation.


ELLIOTT GONZO HITS KODE MEDIA.

London-based director Elliott Gonzo has completed his move to Kode Media.


LOOP TALENT SWOOP FOR TOM TURLEY.

Loop Talent's skilled roster now boasts the intrepid cinematographer Tom Turley.


CHANNEL 4 DIVERSITY IN ADVERTISING AWARD 2021.

It’s that time of year again - yes, Channel 4 have announced the shortlist for their Diversity in Advertising Award.


ALAN MASFERRER HEADS TO HAMLET

HAMLET have nabbed Alan Masferrer for their roster for representation across Belgium, France, China, the Netherlands and Japan.


ROGUE FILMS SIGN BETHAN SELLER.

Rogue Films have completed the signing of director Bethan Seller for commercial representation in the UK.


BISCUIT FILMWORKS SIGN BINE BACH

Biscuit Filmworks have added Copenhagen-based director Bine Bach to their roster for US and UK representation.


IT'S YEMI BAMIRO FOR RATTLING STICK.

Yemi Bamiro, the filmmaker behind 'One Man and His Shoes', has joined Rattling Stick for UK representation.


BANG TV WELCOME JARI IMBESI.

Italian filmmaker Jari Imbesi is the latest addition to Bang TV's enterprising roster.


PRESS REPLAY: THE RETURN OF GAMESMASTER.

Next on the TV comeback trail is GamesMaster, the show that turned astronomer Sir Patrick Moore into a nightmare-fuelled cyborg.


A PAIR OF SIGNINGS AT BLINK

Blink have announced a pair of new additions to their roster in the form of John Ogunmuyiwa and directing duo Jungle.


News

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