David Reviews

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

Latest Work
    • A proper jamboree.Those who find JD Sports’ festive advertising too sleek or stony-faced may appreciate this 40” plug for Footasylum - a former takeover target for JD.
    • Halloumi hullabaloo.Hindsight is a wonderful thing, especially where takeaway is concerned. That’s the premise of this knockabout commercial for Domino’s Pizza.
    • HANZOHANZO joins The VisionariesThe Visionaries have added multi-talented director HANZOHANZO to their roster of freelance talent.
    • Home for the holidays.This heartwarming commercial for BNZ resets expectations about what truly matters over the festive period.
    • Street-level stories.Hardly any TV series' plans for 2020 have made it through the pandemic unscathed, and one of Britain's most iconic soaps is no exception.
    • Sarah Gavron goes Independent.Sarah Gavron - the director behind 'Brick Lane', 'Suffragette', and 'Village at the End of the World' - has joined Independent’s crack team of filmmakers.
    • Arts & Sciences open London officeUS production company have shrewdly asked James Bland to run their newly opened London operation.
    • Helping hands.This typically classy outing for Klarna draws attention to the brand's new app.
    • Last dram standing.This lively Glenlivet commercial features a master of the art of balancing a drink.
    • Lou Jasmine joins Kode.East London-born director and photographer Lou Jasmine has joined Kode for commercial representation.
    • Progress welcome Sam Washington.Writer and director Sam Washington is the latest addition to The Progress Film Company's roster of talent.
    • Keep your eyes open.Driverless technology may soon provide "universal autonomy", but NRMA Insurance would prefer customers to keep their wits about them for now.
    • Sticker Studios partner with Lemonade Reps.Hoxton-based Sticker Studios are the latest to join the enterprising roster at Lemonade Reps.
    • Dreaming to you.Those feeling the loss of a big Christmas get-together this year may find their perspective shifted by this touching animated ad for Great Ormond Street Hospital.
    • Fern Berresford signs with Rattling StickRattling Stick have signed award-winning director and photographer Fern Berresford to their roster for UK representation.
    • People are strange.Childline assure children that when it comes to fitting in, there's no such thing as normal.
    • Strength in numbers at The Quarry.London-based editing house The Quarry have added six new faces to their crack roster.
    • Hello, pickle.This beautifully observed commercial for Branston Pickle depicts a woman who’s recently moved out of the family home.

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Footasylum
"Christmas with the Redknapps"
40s
3 December 2020

Those who find JD Sports’ festive advertising too sleek or stony-faced may appreciate this 40” plug for Footasylum (a former takeover target for JD). The retailer enlist Harry and Sandra Redknapp, who disagree over their Christmas dessert selection. Luckily for Harry, social media also craves - you gussed it - jam roly-polys.

YouTube stars Amelia Dimoldenberg, Chunkz, and Yung Filly gatecrash the Redknapps' country manor, acquiting themselves well amid the tongue-in-cheek chaos. It may not be the height of sophistication, but there's a lot to be said for a giant bauble crashing through the wall without pausing for hand sanitiser or NHS Track and Trace.


Domino's Pizza
"Concrete Claire"
30s
3 December 2020

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, especially where takeaway is concerned. That’s the premise of this knockabout commercial for Domino’s Pizza, who sow the seeds of doubt into those tempted by rival establishments—namely, the Madagascan halloumi joint across town.

One household (no-one used that word before Covid-19, surely?) is intrigued by said pop-up, only for a familiar-looking visitor from the future to intervene. After all, nobody asked for a side order of cement.

The protagonist’s fateful journey feels a little rushed, but that doesn’t detract from a fun cautionary tale. It’s also a neat evolution of the brand’s ‘Joy of Missing Out’ line, with viewers urged to distrust new culinary experiences.


HANZOHANZO joins The Visionaries

The Visionaries have added multi-talented director HANZOHANZO to their roster of freelance talent.

Beginning with classic cel animation at just sixteen, HANZOHANZO (aka Hans-Christoph Schultheiss) has developed a unique visual approach which encompasses manga-inspired animation, surreal imagery, and live-action augmented with psychedelic twists.


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Bank of New Zealand
"The Greatest Gift"
90s
3 December 2020

While New Zealanders have a better chance of spending time with loved ones than many across the globe this Christmas, this touching commercial from the Bank of NZ reminds us that the effects of the pandemic have been far deeper than simple physical distance. Economic nosedives have caused many serious financial hardship, and this film follows one woman who moves back in with her parents over the holidays.

Director Mark Albiston is careful not to overplay his hand, allowing the film's emotional narrative to build gently and without forced schmaltz. The central character's frustration at her circumstances plays out nicely, until a thrifty Christmas gift resets her expectations about what truly matters over the festive period. Those agonising over showing material appreciation in the face of their bank balance, take heart - it really is the thought that counts.


Coronation Street
"The Little Back Street in Salford"
60s
3 December 2020

It's safe to say that hardly any TV series' plans for 2020 have made it through the pandemic unscathed, and one of Britain's most iconic soaps is no exception. Plans for major stunts and explosive revelations had to be rewritten for Coronation Street's sixtieth-anniversary blowout episode, and this stripped-back ad for the event reflects that change of pace in heartfelt fashion.

Rather than hint about drama to come, director Dee Koppang O'Leary's film instead takes a look at the beloved show's origins - recreating writer Tony Warren and producer Olive Shapley's 1959 train journey from London to Manchester, when Corrie's concept was conceived.

The period details are well observed here, and an earnest central performance effectively captures a young writer's excitement at hitting on a brand new concept. It's a charming reminder that the cornerstone of compelling television is good storytelling, whatever the scale, and that writers and creatives the industry over have been successfully returning to those roots under quarantine conditions.


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Five Star Work
(1-25 of 25)

The Glenlivet
"Against the Tide"
60s
1 Dec 2020
Few drinkers have endured that tricky walk back from a crowded bar with drink(s) in hand lately. This lively Glenlivet commercial features a master of the art, as director Tom Noakes pits him against a conveyer belt-stroke-existential obstacle course. Welcome to the surprisingly exhausting world of whisky appreciation, eh?

NRMA
"Sleeper"
60s
1 Dec 2020
Driverless technology may soon provide "universal autonomy", but insurance firms like NRMA would prefer customers to keep their wits about them for now. Rather than inflict another graphic car crash on desensitized viewers, the brand and director Juan Cabral present a dreamlike twist on the road safety formula.

Childline
"Nobody is Normal"
80s
26 Nov 2020
While there's been plenty of talk about a social 'new normal' over the past year, Childline assure children that when it comes to fitting in, there's no such thing as normal. It's a weighty concept which is whimsically realised here by director Catherine Prowse, who uses tactile stop-motion animation to show that under the surface we're all equally odd.

Branston
"Hit of Home"
60s
27 Nov 2020
This beautifully observed commercial for Branston Pickle depicts a woman who’s recently moved out of the family home. She has a new flat, a new job, and—most importantly—a new voicemail from mum and dad. However, it's the audience that hears it first, with a lovely blend of encouragement and incidental details.

Sportsdirect.com
"Sport Starts Here"
60s
26 Nov 2020
When DAVID heard that Sports Direct were releasing a Christmas ad, he imagined Mike Ashley in an ill-fitting Santa costume on the streets of Newcastle. Fortunately, director Henry Scholfield and agency MOX London spare viewers a nightmare before Christmas and instead deliver a pacy, stylish ode to finding one's ideal sport.

Short Films
"Keep Calling"
8 mins 57s
26 Nov 2020
This timely documentary from director Liam Saint-Pierre focuses on Michael Chilokoa - a volunteer who offers a lifeline to lonely and vulnerable people. One client, Lillian Chuntz, proves a tough nut to crack…until she reveals a passion for singing that goes back to the Second World War. Soon enough, Lillian demands her own performance from Michael.

Allbirds
"Tread Lighter"
40s
25 Nov 2020
This crafty piece of work aims to prove how light Allbirds trainers are through advanced scientific techniques—namely, combining balloons, string, and some leaf blowers. Who needs the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, eh? Clean, playful, and focused, this is a cut above other half-hearted Christmas sales plugs.

Toyota
"Unbreakable Bond"
90s
25 Nov 2020
Toyota neatly handle hanging out at a safe physical distance without ever mentioning the word 'pandemic' in this amusing Kiwi ad. Bound partly by their shared love of powerful trucks and rugged terrain, a diverse collection of mates happen upon each other by the roadside and decide to stop for what turns into quite the extended chat.

Beats by Dre
"You Love Me"
2 mins
23 Nov 2020
2020 has thrown many of society's ugliest aspects into stark relief, and perhaps none so forcefully as the insidious presence of racism. With Houston rapper Tobe Nwigwe's narration establishing a sense of defiant gravitas from the jump, this arresting film from Beats by Dre interrogates American society's love-hate relationship with Black culture: co-opted for cool points or derided as unsophisticated by turns.

Acura
"Break the Silence"
1 min 56s
20 Nov 2020
Nods to Harold Lloyd, John Ford, and Buster Keaton abound in this entertaining commercial for Acura. Tightly shot by director Mark Jenkinson, the ad brings a TLX saloon into the silent film era for some anachronistic thrills. Once the protagonist is behind the wheel, he gives bemused police officers and Western villains a thunderous glimpse into the future.

Short Films
"The World's Strongest Brothers"
8 mins 08s
18 Nov 2020
According to Invergordon resident Luke Stoltman, he and his brother Tom are “just a couple of dafties from the Highlands”. They are also two of the world’s strongest men, so the pair can afford a little self-deprecation. Such affable moments are peppered throughout this documentary from director Pete Banks, who joins the brothers as they eat, train, and recover in their hometown.

Lidl
"A Christmas You Can Believe In"
60s
17 Nov 2020
After such a tumultuous year, one could forgive no-frills supermarket Lidl for injecting schmaltz into their Christmas campaign. Instead, this 60" animation skewers the brand’s rivals, both figuratively and literally. Meigan Brown & Tobias Owen’s cheeky, lyrical script prioritises purse strings over heart strings, with anthropomorphic robins and carrots given short shrift by the cast.

Hyundai
"I'm In Charge"
90s
18 Nov 2020
The success of a commercial like this becomes entirely reliant on the visual dimension and, in lesser hands, it could easily fade into the background as is often the way with advertising which adopts this tone. But, thankfully, director Amber Grace Johnson has elevated this film with a stunning cascade of beautiful imagery.

O2
"Darcy & Bubl"
60s
16 Nov 2020
O2 have joined the long list of brands choosing to advertise themselves at Christmas time with a significant hero film. The recently introduced Bubl would be the star of the show if he wasn't being upstaged by ten-year-old ice skater Darcy Murdoch. The human and VFX robot combine charmingly to dance on the ice and – in the process – remind the watching audience of the phone network's ability to provide us with entertainment whereever we are.

Tesco
"No Naughty List"
60s
16 Nov 2020
According to this irreverent Tesco ad, Santa has ditched the naughty list for 2020, which is good news for the likes of Dominic Cummings, Margaret Ferrier, and Donald Trump. Of course, Blue Supermarket have more innocuous misdeeds in mind. These include bad lockdown haircuts, hoarding toilet paper, and not donating to Captain Tom Moore’s charity walk.

Plenty
"Merry Xmess"
1 min 36s
15 Nov 2020
Those who equate Christmas to crime scene clean-up will enjoy this 90” ad from kitchen roll brand Plenty, who honour viewers forced to get their hands dirty on the big day. There’s no hint of a pandemic in director Steve Rogers’s film - just a fun compendium of spills, splats, and splashes accompanied by Nazereth's cover of 'Love Hurts'.

McDonald's
"Inner Child"
90s
15 Nov 2020
Last year, McDonald’s showed how Christmas can thaw even the most cynical teenage girl. Here, they return to that theme with a teenage boy and a single mum who won’t take "bah humbug" for an answer. The Pixar-like twist is that the teen's inner child is pumped for everything festive, including snowball fights, tree decorations, and novelty antlers.

Klarna
"Clothes Love All"
45s
12 Nov 2020
Does clothing have a prescribed gender, age, or ethnicity? Absolutely not, says this beautifully stylish ad from Klarna, who encourage audiences to buy now and pay later when it comes to expanding their wardrobe - however eccentric their choices may be. Colour, texture, and fabric are less important than how an outfit makes you feel, after all.

NHS
"Then, Now, Always"
2 mins
13 Nov 2020
MullenLowe’s latest NHS recruitment film arrives as a potential vaccine offers hope to millions of viewers. The only way to ensure it reaches people’s veins is strong staff levels, and this two-minute effort powerfully demonstrates what strength in numbers can achieve. Such a decisive tone is welcome after a year of mixed messages and eyebrow-raising government slogans.

John Lewis & Waitrose
"Give a Little Love"
2 mins
13 Nov 2020
adam&eveDDB famously don't rest on their laurels when it comes to the highest profile piece of advertising of the year... almost as soon as the John Lewis Christmas ad is broadcast, they're working on the next one. But this time last year, they could hardly have begun to consider the circumstances in which the 2020 instalment would land.

Myer
"Bigger Than Christmas"
1 min 40s
12 Nov 2020
Australian department store Myer prepare for what they refuse to accept as a gloomy Christmas with this entertaining festive ad. Although previous years have featured camping trips with Santa and animated elves, 2020 demands a different approach. A year without celebration, the brand claims, should at least end on a party.

Nike
"Victory Swim"
90s
11 Nov 2020
Modest swimwear takes centre stage in this instalment of Nike's campaign for inclusivity in sport. Framed by a mother teaching her daughter to swim, the kinetic film demonstrates how breaking down barriers which keep women out of the water has benefits for everyone - whether on a personal, familial, or competitive level.

Experian
"Boost"
40s
11 Nov 2020
This Experian commercial delivers bracing visuals and a great punchline, as the credit reference agency unveil their new Boost function. Channeling the likes of ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ and ‘First Man’, director Camila Zapiola ostensibly sends a bloke into the wild blue yonder… but the reality is more, erm, filling than thrilling.

Burberry
"Festive"
1 min 47s
10 Nov 2020
Burberry inject some much-appreciated joy into their festive outing for 2020. The tightly choreographed film sees a group of friends turn a trip to the local takeaway into performance art, all while hailstones the size of bricks utterly fail to knock them off-stride. The fantastical weather is wisely wielded by directing collective Megaforce, who create a dreamy yet grounded vibe.

Coca Cola
"The Letter"
2 mins 30s
10 Nov 2020
An offshore engineer gives Postman Pat a run for his money Coca-Cola’s two-and-a-half minute Christmas film. Directed by Taika Waititi, the ad stars a man hell-bent on delivering his daughter's letter to Santa by hand. Cue a pacy, globetrotting, presumably frostbitten tale, as the bloke powers toward the North Pole by any means necessary.

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.