David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

The Fableists
"Finn"
2 mins 05s
7 May 2014
Loading the player ...
UK Fashion Labels

This terrific little film promoting an ethical clothing label for kids features a fearless - and skilled - young skateboarder learning his craft. As a brand, The Fableists is described in its press release as "a mix of timeless, unisex and ultra-stylish clothes... which represents a move away from mass-produced fashion manufactured under sinister conditions and laden with chemicals".

In showing Finn wearing Fableist gear we're made aware a) of its durability and b) that we all have a responsibility to children, wherever they are.

It's poignant and beautifully made, and the track Hope / Grace by Edinburgh band Delta Mainline is an apt choice. The boy executes feats that would have most of us, as parents, running to stop him; but as passive viewers we're made instead to marvel at his spatial awareness, his motor control and his balance as he sails off concrete cliffs and judges slopes.

There's something of the intensity of Aoife McArdle's promo for Open Eye Signal by Jon Hopkins, which also features a lone young skateboarder. Finn is like his younger self; and the degree of single-minded concentration and self-containment he displays is utterly commanding.

Apparently this is the first in a series of clips which documents "kids around the world - kids with a gift, kids with drive, kids with ambition, kids who have overcome adversity" and who embody the brand's rebellious yet positive attitude.

The label has come about as a collaboration among top London talent in the realms of advertising, film and design - so that the agencies involved are as much brand owners as they are suppliers. Full credit, then, to Brothers & Sisters, Great Guns, Jungle and director Olivier Venturini along with Electric Theatre Collective and indeed Finn himself for getting this project off the ground.

Listerine
"World Cup Germs"

Matt said:

Funnily enough it's tenuous promotional sponsorships like this that leave a nasty taste in your mouth.


CLICK HERE TO SEE CLIP

QUICK SEARCH

Latest Additions

J Dilla
"The Sickness (ft NAS)"
2 mins 42s
4 May 2016
Producer and rapper J Dilla may have died in 2006 but his music legacy lives on. RuffMercy has made a worthy promo for Dilla's track 'The Sickness' (featuring Nas) from long-lost album 'The Diary'; employing his distinctive anarchic style and collagist imagery to create a visual impact equal to the track's energy and heft.

Jack Garratt
"Surprise Yourself"
4 mins 36s
4 May 2016
Is Jack Garratt the secret love child of James Blake and Ed Sheeran? We have our suspicions. However, the undulating intensity of 'Surprise Yourself' works well with Tom Clarkson's promo in which a disparate bunch of people face their fears / realise their ambitions. The discovery that nothing is holding back but themselves is given wings by the uplifting chorus.

Bloc Party
"Virtue"
3 mins 36s
4 May 2016
Bloc Party's track 'Virtue' from their most recent album Hymns gets an 80s-influenced promo by James Copeman. Reverberating with those bright pastel hues which evoke the hideous interior design of the time (what were we thinking of), it features turquoise-coloured people attempting to lure others into temptation.

Radiohead
"Burn the Witch"
3 mins 59s
4 May 2016
When Thom Yorke and co. hit the delete button on their social media presence a few days ago, hopes of Radiohead's long-awaited successor to 2011's 'The King of Limbs' began to rise. Enter 'Burn the Witch' - and the immediate takeaway is that Trumpton has taken one hell of a dark turn.

Kronenbourg 1664
"The Alsace-tians"
60s
3 May 2016
Kronenbourg 1664 deliver another waggish insight into the Alsace region with football legend and thespian Eric Cantona as our guide. Cantona may be most famously associated with seagulls and sardines, but his co-stars here are a particularly talented breed of dog - the Alsace-tians. In an amusing sequence, Cantona explains how his furry passengers are rescue dogs of a different kind.

Haier
"Zero Distance"
40s
3 May 2016
Haier announce their arrival on the European electronics scene with this fun commercial scored like a jaunty continental spy romp. A Haier technician finds all sorts of cramped, chilly and awkward hiding places in order to observe the appliance needs of an oblivious homeowner. The surveillance angle walks a potentially creepy line, but the light-hearted execution by director Hervé Plumet allays such concerns.

Aldi
"Birth"
30s
29 Apr 2016
A mum gives birth to a healthy baby boy - one who offers to drive them both home after an ever so exhausting day. This man-child astounds the midwife, but it's the supermarket's pricing which takes mother's breath away. Aldi must be pleased with how their off-brand nappies stack up against the big name alternatives as this is the second ad in a row highlighting their baby section.

Hellmann's
"Finding Grilltopia"
60s
1 May 2016
Hellmann's aims to knock grilling up a notch with this energetic launch ad for their range of adventurous sauces. YouTube foodie DJ BBQ is on a mission to convince a gang of non-grillers of the joys of introducing meat to fire. Our host may be off the 'rad' scale, but his enthusiasm for all things grilled is captured in an enjoyable fashion.

Tesco
"Fist Pump"
40s
1 May 2016
Tesco's Mum and Dad load the boot after a successful shopping trip. No sign of their half-witted offspring this time, and that's no bad... thing but the lack of chemistry between Ben Miller and Ruth Jones has a dulling effect on a script which needed tip-top performances for us to get past its familiar feel.

The Night Manager
"Opening Titles"
49s
26 Apr 2016
Many could see Tom Hiddleston taking on the mantle of James Bond after watching the actor in BBC series The Night Manager. But, to judge by the opening titles, he wasn't the only person involved in this project with eyes on the well-moneyed 007 franchise... Elastic's clever enmeshment of spy and high-life iconography by Patrick Clair looks like a treatment for the next Bond outing's title sequence.

Kwik-Fit
"Mr Shah"
30s
25 Apr 2016
Portraying the Kwik-Fit team as heroes riding to the rescue once again proves a worthy conceit in the latest instalment of the new campaign. Mr Shah needed help getting to his wedding on time and he knows who to thank. Once again, any portentousness is offset by understated voice work... though, on this occasion, it's a little indistinct.

Admiral Insurance
"Genius"
40s
1 May 2016
Admiral's new, well, admiral wants to get better acquainted with those under her leadership. When she asks who came up with their multi-car option, the clever clogs in question receives a very public tribute. The brand are really pushing the customer-focused angle, and it's an agreeable enough visual gag. However, the exchange between the admiral and her overly-keen colleague lets the comedy drift out to sea.

iD Mobile
"Urban Cowboys"
85s
6 Apr 2016
Another of the films celebrating the existence of the Fletcher Street Riding Club by Rogue's Tom Barbor-Might. Here a variety of voices involved with this extraordinary project explain how caring for horses helps to keep young men away from gang violence. As with the other work in his series, this has been beautifully filmed.

Short Films
"In Time. A Reflection on the End of our Youth"
2 mins
3 May 2016
Unit 9's A Common Future directs this urgent and beautiful portrait of youth as a series of flitting images. "We are never ready to play our part in the oldest tale" underlines the film's Blake-inspired preoccupation with the growing process - how innocence is on a collision course with the world, and how the results can be either liberating or oppressing.

Cheestrings
"Captain America: Civil War"
30s
30 Apr 2016
Now where did we leave that book of cheese-related puns lying around? Oh, wait, never mind - sounds like Cheestrings got a hold of it. The lunchbox mainstays attempt to cash in on the popularity of Marvel's 'Captain Amercia: Civil War' by pitting two teams of bright-faced, gag-laden youngsters against each other. Alas, the ad doesn't do their Avengers potential much good.

Slimfast
"Works For Me"
30s
1 May 2016
Having lost over a stone in "just six months" with Slim Fast according to The Daily Rail, Alexandra Burke has been crowned the weight loss brand's new ambassador. "Works for me," she says after we're treated to a bunch of vignettes in which young women are trying to drop some poundage fast ahead of holidays and hot dates.

AirBnB
"Don't Go, Live"
60s
1 May 2016
AirBnB underline their home from home approach to holiday accommodation with this effective piece of work. Rather than experience a destination through selfie sticks and an endless selection of filters, the brand encourage us to use all of our senses to get the most out of our time away. The ad suggests returning to someone's home rather than a copy-and-paste hotel room helps create a holiday with a difference.

Armani Code
"Profumo"
45s
1 May 2016
This ad for Armani Code Profumo sees a strangely waxwork-like Chris Pine saunter through an equally lifeless party complete with 'arty' lighting... or maybe it's just dodgy electrics. In either case, the actor observes his female company like a smart casual Terminator before asking one guest, "Did you hear something?" Yes, Chris - sounds a lot like "ka-ching" to us.

Transitions
"Fashion Mode"
20s
1 May 2016
Years ago, Mrs DAVID found an old clothing catalogue from 1934. Among such gems as the "Boys' Wonder Suit" and "Stout Stays for Matrons" was a "Smart Blouse for Indoor Wear and Out". She is reminded of that catalogue by this spot for Transitions adaptive lenses in which we're told that their specs mean we "can always be in fashion mode - indoors, and outdoors". Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose, as they say.

Apple Watch
"Alice Cooper"
15s
1 May 2016
Aside from the chic aesthetic, these Apple Watch ads have never captured the imagination. However, there is something pleasing about watching rock musician and occasional snake wrangler Alice Cooper practising his golf swing in an ombre dimension. As Wayne Campbell once said: "Does this guy know how to party or what?"

Just-Eat
"Manband"
30s
2 May 2016
Just-Eat conclude their enjoyably silly trio of musical ads with an affectionate spoof of the fine art of 90s boy band videos. Apropos of one chap opening the advertised app on his phone, he and his chums break into a takeaway-flavoured rendition of 'Everybody (Backstreet's Back)' by - you guessed it - the Backstreet Boys.

Pom-Bear
"Bare"
20s
2 May 2016
This ad for Pom-Bear crisps has a couple of the ursine-inspired (not flavoured, mind) snacks discussing what they're lacking in the best possible way. Full of good cheer rather than artificial colours or flavours, they're nonetheless flummoxed when told they're also as naked as the day their potato god made them. Hmm, we're not sure whether this should be shown before or after the watershed.

Lidl
"Full Of..."
30s
2 May 2016
This hardworking spot for Lidl in Ireland applies some inventive usage of the word 'full' to drive home the message that your big shop can cost up to 50% less than it might elsewhere. A busy mum with a full household explains why she shops at the discount retailer, and her last comment telling you to give short shrift to anyone who advocates a different supermarket is good fun.

Asda
"Mixology"
10s
2 May 2016
An array of spirits glide across our screens in this spot for Asda. The VO flags up their £15 price tag along the way; observing that we don't have to be expert cocktail makers to recognise what great value they provide. It's hard to make short promotional ads which feel as if some thought has gone into them, but that's exactly what these manage to do.

Asda
"Queen's Birthday"
10s
2 May 2016
One of several 10-second spots for Asda. This one urges us to celebrate the Queen's birthday with a bottle of bubbly, and while the VO announces the brand on offer some corgis trot across the lawn in the background. It's a sweet idea and no doubt the attendant cucumber sarnies will encourage more than a few people to pick up a loaf along with their fizz.


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