David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Bulldog
"Bank Robbery"
60s
1 October 2017
UK Skincare

Skincare brand Bulldog provided one of Christmas 2016’s surprise ads. Socially-awkward elves exchanging gifts underlined the brand’s appreciation of male hang-ups. This latest outing now brings their eponymous mutt to life - and he aims to turn this would-be bank robber’s life around.

Introducing himself as “a telepathic bulldog, yeah?”, Andy’s canine passenger knows what’s really bothering him: the single life. Despite his mates’ nuptials, all Andy needs is a little confidence… and some of the advertised moisturiser.

Perma-grumpy expression aside, the bulldog provides likeable moral support. ClearScore’s Moose has a new rival in the psychic canine stakes, too. It’s a fun direction - and a helpful reminder that stockings and sensitive skin don’t go.

Elisa
"Miss You"

Nick said:

Why is the dad crying with laughter in his message?


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U2
"You're The Best Thing About Me"
4 mins 48s
13 Oct 2017
It's such a shame that Tatia Pilieva's short film is a promo for U2, because it's so searingly poignant that it deserves better than this dialled-in track by Bono and co. To complement the song's theme about love, Pilieva created a mini-documentary about four couples - who are together in real life - facing a long-distance separation of uncertain length.

Grizzly Bear
"Mourning Sound"
4 mins 28s
13 Oct 2017
Grizzly Bear's first album since 2012's much-loved Shields has a more electronic slant than we're used to hearing from them, and nowhere is this more apparent than on 'Mourning Sound'. An oblique reflection on homelessness, hauling logs, and walking along busy freeways, it inspired promo director Beatrice Pegard in a completely different way.

Gucci
"Unskilled Worker"
60s
13 Oct 2017
Don’t like the moniker fool you - artist Unskilled Worker a.k.a. Helen Downie knows her stuff. Alongside glimpses of her artwork, we see Unskilled Worker leave her mark on Gucci’s latest collection. Shot with 35mm stock, the film offers an attractive insight into Downie’s craft… although she insists it’s the art that's in control.

CoverGirl
"Made in the Mirror"
1 min 40s
13 Oct 2017
Cosmetics advertising is undergoing something of a, well, makeover. Boots No 7’s recent fencing bout delivered style and substance - now it’s US brand CoverGirl’s turn. This classy ad gathers a strong cast: diverse, dynamic, and in control of their identities. Contrasted with the modish cast and cinematography, the soundtrack provides old-school satisfaction.

Smyths
"Snot"
60s
13 Oct 2017
Smyths' 2017 Christmas campaign has big shoes to fill. Last year's effort - featuring a rewrite of Beyoncé's 'If I Were A Boy' and a whimsical dive into a kid's imagination - went down a storm. It's a tough ask, and this excellent animated ad meets the challenge with relish. A playful voiceover narrates the adventures of Snot, a hapless ball of yuck who's been sent down life's reject chute.

UNICEF
"I Am Sister"
70s
13 Oct 2017
Another family-focused spot from UNICEF takes a look at sisterhood in all its glory. Positives and negatives are shown equally throughout the montage, taking us through a warts and all overview of sibling life. It's a smart move to have a refugee affected by the issue provide the VO, giving the film an added touch of emotional authenticity.

UNICEF
"I Am Brother"
70s
13 Oct 2017
UNICEF's latest campaign tackles the bizarre UK law which states that siblings of refugees aren't considered family... which makes less sense every time we read it. This smartly constructed montage shows off the highs and lows of brotherhood, and highlights exactly what kids are missing out on when they're kept away from their families.

Jessie Ware
"Alone"
3 mins 38s
13 Oct 2017
Jessie Ware enjoys some alone time in this lucent promo, courtesy of Forever’s Charlie Robins. Amidst stylish rooms and equally chic wardrobe changes, Ware blends sweet nothings and enduring bonds: ‘I could watch you watch me forever’. Beautifully lit with ornate set design complementing Ware’s urbane presence.

TD_Nasty
"Where U Wanna Be (feat. Clara La San)"
3 mins 42s
13 Oct 2017
A dancer rests her eyes and nothing else in this nimble TD_Nasty promo. Sleepwalking has rarely looked so graceful - no blindfolds required, either. Director Fiona Jane Burgess captures unrestrained expression in one continuous take. Meanwhile, Nasty belies his name with some inviting beats and Clara La San’s guest vocals.

thetrainline.com
"Free Ride"
33s
13 Oct 2017
Trainline’s 2015 ad gave rail travellers plenty to shout about. This latest outing suggests the joy of saving with the online ticket office. Played in reverse with a bebop score, we learn what prompted this passenger’s solo routine. Good luck expressing your glee during rush hour, though - it may be a tight squeeze.

Dacia
"Simple is Smart"
72s
13 Oct 2017
Dacia celebrates simplicity with this charming animated ad from Aardman Animation. Ralph Ineson's notoriously deep VO compliments the clean visuals, as an entirely white world of folded paper illustrates the lack of clutter in the brand's 'Simple' range. The cars have a compellingly cute design which makes them stand out against their monochrome surroundings.

Short Films
"Cassie"
10 mins 11s
13 Oct 2017
Relationships are never easy - even for R&B star Cassie. Co-written with Burning Reel’s Harrison Boyce, this slow-burning short film sees Cassie and her beau go through the wringer. Boyce establishes their turbulent relationship amidst motel rooms, convenience stores, and desert vistas. A handsome showcase for Cassie’s new sound.

San Miguel
"Treehouse Masters"
90s
13 Oct 2017
Another intriguing ad from San Miguel's 'Rich List' campaign delves into an unusual life - this time of a guy who builds fantastical treehouses. We follow him as he finds salvation away from the hustle and bustle of city life, seeking peace in the forest. Luckily, he still has time for a few beers with his mates among the trees.

Specsavers
"Rapunzel"
30s
12 Oct 2017
This amusing ad for Specsavers highlights their ability to visit you at home if extenuating circumstances - like being stuck in a tower - prevent you from getting to them. The charming animation harks back to classic Disney, as a knight heroically faces down a dragon to get Rapunzel her free home eye test... That's a whole new level of customer service.

Skoda
"Dog Sled"
45s
12 Oct 2017
This chilly Skoda commercial opens with a poser: “What is a road, really?” While the narrator muses on highways and byways, a musher leads his snow hounds across frozen terrain and white-out conditions. The Swedish marque commend those who stray off the beaten path - preferably in the advertised vehicle.

McDonald's
"Gobblefunk"
30s
12 Oct 2017
McDonald's bring back their Roald Dahl Happy Meal promotion with this entertaining ad, directed by Luke Roulstone. What appears to be a simple parents evening conversation takes a turn for the surreal as the dad and teacher begin slipping Dahl's fantastical language into their conversation. We sense a bit of tension between them here... perhaps Gobblefunk is the language of love.

H & M
"Weeknd Stroll"
30s
12 Oct 2017
The Weeknd takes a stroll through Los Angeles in this H&M commercial. Well, sort of. The Canadian singer models the fashion retailer’s latest threads against a constantly changing backdrop. The LED set allows him to perfect his moody strut in style. Meanwhile, Mr Weeknd’s ‘Nomads’ provides the apt soundtrack.

Hammerson
"Style Seeker"
60s
12 Oct 2017
This compelling, dance-focused ad from LEZ Creative's Holly Blakey imaginatively explores the Brent Cross PLUS 'Style Seeker' app. The app allows shoppers to snap a picture of someone else's outfit and find out where they can get it themselves... although probably not as quick as they do here. Blakey's masterful choreography is at full power, as pairs of dancers acquire items of each others' clothing.

Sony Xperia
"Tumbleweed"
30s
12 Oct 2017
Tumbleweed tastes the rainbow in this colourful ad for the Sony Xperia. The film is a spiritual successor to Sony's iconic 'Bouncing Balls' ad, as a fleet of brightly-coloured tumbleweed spills out across the desert, scaring off some sheep and enveloping a car as they go. A relaxed soundtrack adds to the surreal feeling of the piece. Lovely, polished work.

Land Rover Range Rover
"Fireflies"
75s
12 Oct 2017
With Planet Earth 3 still a way off, this Land Rover campaign should keep animal lovers satisfied. Having recently recruited dogs and goats, Range Rover now summon a swarm of fireflies who seem rather taken with the advertised jeep. Natural imagery and luminous VFX from Jam Films combine to good effect.

Calm
"L'Eau de Chris"
35s
12 Oct 2017
Love Islander Chris Hughes launches a brand of mineral water - imbued with his own tears, no less. Before cynics weep, it’s all in aid of mental health charity CALM’s partnership with Topman. Both urge men to discuss their concerns rather than - you guessed it - bottle them up. A shrewd bid to engage younger audiences.

Short Films
"Anxiety"
4 mins 40s
11 Oct 2017
This vivid short film marks World Mental Health Day with an eloquent insight into troubled minds. These individuals come from a variety of backgrounds. Whatever their differences, they share a common foe: anxiety. Directors Lily Rose Thomas and Stephen Isaac-Wilson craft an intimate portrayal of the condition.

Quorn
"Sausages"
20s
10 Oct 2017
Quorn’s long-running Q&A session reaches Hannah’s kitchen as she ponders her mid-week menu. Combined with apple juice and some tossed vegetables, the brand’s meat-free bangers earns her a hearty applause. Having covered everything from summer barbecues to family dinners, the meat substitute insist they can solve any culinary dilemma.

MasterCard
"MasterPass"
30s
9 Oct 2017
MasterCard jumps on the Halloween train early with this costume-focused ad for their MasterPass. Sorting out your kid's outfit is a piece of cake with their organised ordering service, as illustrated by the parent 'swiping' through options and changing their kid's clothes in real time. It's a neat enough conceit, although the voiceover seems a little too enthusiastic about fox onesies.

Orange
"Spoilers"
63s
11 Oct 2017
Orange prove knowledge is power in these amusing 20” ads. A group of workmates enjoy boardroom privileges, Bangles on-demand, and infinite cake. No brute force required - mere hints of plot twists and cliffhangers are enough to turn any situation in their favour. Each vignette takes spoiler alerts to cunning extremes.


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