David Reviews

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

Latest Work
    • Living on PauseThis affecting film for ERUK has a sting in the tail which will draw compassion from even the most tuned-out viewer.
    • Trump joins Lincoln in fields.Let's face it, satire isn't going to hasten the end of Donald Trump.
    • Put Hate on HoldWith public tensions at an all-time high due to Covid-19, it feels like a very fitting moment to highlight the abuse that public-facing workers are subjected to on a regular basis.
    • Dog Eat Dog sign Marc BethkeDog Eat Dog have added noted automotive director Marc Bethke to their roster.
    • Mind and BodyThis nifty piece of work for Asics emphasises the importance of mind over matter.
    • The time is now.5:10 is the real number of the beast in this super piece of work for EA's Need For Speed franchise.
    • Meet Factory's new creative directors.Seasoned sound designers Dan Beckwith and Jon Clarke have been sworn in as Factory’s new creative directors.
    • Unmasking selfishness.This Swedish film for Volvo accidentally offers a perfect commentary on those objecting to public health measures during the current pandemic.
    • Reynald Gresset heads to The SweetshopThe Sweetshop's UK arm have added London-based director Reynald Gresset to their roster.
    • Railing cry.This 30" London North Eastern Railway film aims to put bums on train seats again.
    • Hola from 1stAveMachine Buenos Aries.1stAveMachine have expanded into Argentina with the launch of their new Buenos Aries office.
    • No Pain, All GainVR workout programme FITXR dismiss the notion that one has to suffer in order to get in shape in this satirical ad.
    • Molly Burdett arrives at Spindle.Director and photographer Molly Burdett is the latest to join the forward-thinking roster at Spindle.
    • Heart and beyond.Now that most of life takes place in doors, Dunelm suggest our confines should be as comfortable as possible.
    • Sea change.This atmospheric film for Mercedes shines a light on the way time and climate are changing the shape of life in Thailand.

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Short Films
"Abe and Trump Being Frank"
38s
19 October 2020

Let's face it, satire isn't going to hasten the end of Donald Trump. The cult-like grip he has on his supporters' minds is so tight that, as Trump himself has said, he could begin shooting people in the middle of New York City and it wouldn't loosen at all.

Those opposing Trump are equally convinced of their verdict. And who can blame them? After all, they have borne witness to his moral bankruptcy, intellectual vapidity, venal greed, blatant duplicity, horrific misogyny and obvious racism.

Both sides are baffled by the other's view and there are very few people on the fence, so it's hard to know who is going to watch this excellent piece of lampoonery and find themselves seeing Trump in a whole new light.

To put it bluntly, no one's going to change their vote on the back of this film.

But what does that matter when it's so much fun to watch? The actor playing Trump nails the failed mogul's peculiar speech pattern while the actor playing Abraham Lincoln plays his role with well-concealed contempt.

This is one of a number of entertaining films in this series and we must all hope that they exist to mark the beginning of the end of the Trump presidency rather than - God forbid - its halfway point.


Channel 4
"Together Against Hate"
3 mins 29s
19 October 2020

With public tensions at an all-time high due to Covid-19, it feels like a very fitting moment to highlight the abuse that public-facing workers are subjected to on a regular basis. This extended ad break from Channel 4 gives just a few of these workers a voice, yet speaks for a shamefully large number of people who face verbal and physical abuse while simply doing their jobs.

From call centre staff berated over the phone with threats to shop workers physically attacked by irate customers, this campaign provides a stark reminder that such incidents are, unfortunately, not isolated. And that the seemingly endless pandemic is only making things worse.

It's a canny move to have the featured workers discuss what they love about their job while threat visually creeps in around them, making it clear that tolerating such mistreatment should never be an accepted part of day-to-day life. This is a compassionate campaign at a time when empathy seems in short supply - one which may cool frustrated heads at a critical moment.


Dog Eat Dog sign Marc Bethke

Dog Eat Dog have added noted car director Marc Bethke to their UK roster.

The German's love of film was sparked at an early age, as he immersed himself in life on-set and worked all manner of internships and AD roles to build up his skills. A filmmaking degree in Los Angeles followed and the rest, as they say, is history.


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Asics
"I Move Me"
60s
16 October 2020

This nifty piece of work for Asics emphasises the importance of mind over matter. Nimbly shot by director Fabio Jansen, the film offers an insight into the mental and physical fortitude it takes to keep moving even when one's resources are all but depleted.

While the long-running campaign's plans for a global virtual marathon throughout 2020 were, er, somewhat scuppered by current events, it's clear from this punchy commercial that it's going to take more than a pandemic to keep these committed athletes down.

Kinetic visuals and moody lighting are complemented by a dynamic soundtrack, which is enough to increase even the most committed couch potato's heart rate. Just the kind of energy we need to get us through to 2021, even if we end up crossing the finish line with a limp.


Need For Speed
"Hot Pursuit Remastered"
2 mins 14s
16 October 2020

Forget 666 - the real number of the beast is 5-10. That’s the premise of this super piece of work for EA's Need For Speed franchise: namely, a remaster of 2010 fan favourite 'Hot Pursuit'.

The protagonist is haunted by defeat a decade later, his mate’s winning time of five minutes and 10 seconds mocking him at every turn, business meeting, and café. Fortunately, the remaster offers Michael a shiny chance of redemption.

Non-gamers may run out of patience with him before then, but the numerate visual gags and breezy, self-aware script keep viewers onside. Those with similiar scores to settle must get some practice in (and pray for their partner's understanding, too).


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Five Star Work
(1-25 of 25)

ERUK
"A Life Interrupted"
2 mins 44s
19 Oct 2020
This affecting film for ERUK has a sting in the tail which will draw compassion from even the most tuned-out viewer. The atmospheric action takes place in Thurso, a small town in the North of Scotland, and focuses on Doug - a formerly lost young man who found his calling via surfboard.

Channel 4
"Together Against Hate"
3 mins 29s
19 Oct 2020
With public tensions at an all-time high due to Covid-19, it feels like a very fitting moment to highlight the abuse that public-facing workers are subjected to on a regular basis. This extended ad break from Channel 4 gives just a few of these workers a voice, yet speaks for a shamefully large number of people who face verbal and physical abuse while simply doing their jobs.

Asics
"I Move Me"
60s
16 Oct 2020
This nifty piece of work for Asics emphasises the importance of mind over matter. Nimbly shot by director Fabio Jansen, the film offers an insight into the mental and physical fortitude it takes to keep moving even when one's resources are all but depleted. With kinetic visuals accented by moody lighting and driven by a dynamic soundtrack, it's enough to get even the most committed couch potato's heartrate up.

Need For Speed
"Hot Pursuit Remastered"
2 mins 14s
16 Oct 2020
Forget 666 - the real number of the beast is 5-10. That’s the premise of this super piece of work for EA's Need For Speed franchise: namely, a remaster of 2010 fan favourite 'Hot Pursuit'. The protagonist is haunted by defeat a decade later, his mate’s winning time of five minutes and 10 seconds mocking him at every turn, business meeting, and café.

Volvo
"A Million More"
1 min 53s
15 Oct 2020
This moving film opens by describing public and media resistance when Volvo introduced the three-point safety belt. It could hardly be more timely, as it encapsulates the dissent faced by those advocating various public health measures in our fight to control coronavirus… not least, the encouragement to wear face coverings in a public setting.

AFK Arena
"Belinda Who?"
30s
15 Oct 2020
Elijah Wood and Uzgahk the Horrid’s relationship crisis continues in this AFK Arena film, as the former blurts out the wrong name in the kitchen. He tries to conceal his mobile RPG indiscretion, but the hulking, emotionally fragile Uzgahk won’t get fooled again. Another droll, well-executed spin on the 'video games ruin relationship' meme.

Dunelm
"Home. We Get It (Director's Cut)"
90s
14 Oct 2020
Home is now not only where the heart is, but where almost all of our day-to-day lives take place. Work, school, socialising - 90% of it happens within our own four walls. This charming commercial for Dunelm argues that these confines should at least be as comfortable as possible. Director Jesper Ericstam's film skilfully blends both quirky and familiar moments of life at home.

AFK Arena
"Caught in the Act"
30s
14 Oct 2020
Actor, producer, and Animal Crossing resident Elijah Wood stars in this endearing 30" ad for AFK Arena - a mobile role-playing game (RPG) and certified homewrecker. Well, that's if you believe Uzgahk the Horrid. He stars in a rival, 'World of Warcraft'-style RPG that no longer scratches Wood's gaming itch. One-hundred-and-fifteen hours spent upgrading a loincloth seemingly does that to a relationship.

McDonald's
"The Gift"
60s
13 Oct 2020
First cars rarely meet expectations. Young DAVID, for example, wanted a Batmobile - what he got was, erm, less than heroic. It’s a rite of passage familiar to many (except Batman, of course) and this beautifully judged McDonald’s ad nails it. Shot by directing duo thirtytwo, the ad centres on a seventeen-year-old boy and his new motor—his mum’s old motor, to be precise.

Very
"Life is This Very Moment"
60s
12 Oct 2020
An unlikely friendship takes centre stage in this whimsical ad for online retailer Very. A young girl discusses the changing seasons with her favourite Avenger, listing her favourite things about autumn and supplying Hulk-appropriate replies when her action figure doesn't hold up its end of the conversation.

Sick Kids
"Bravery Beads"
75s
9 Oct 2020
Canada's Sick Kids hospital has a unique programme to help the young people in their care document and process their medical journey: Bravery Beads. Rather than incentives or rewards, this method of tracking treatment allows kids to create a tangible reminder of what they've overcome, and how much progress they've made.

Water Wipes
"Skin"
45s
7 Oct 2020
Despite being the body's largest organ, skin often gets short shrift when it comes to being treated gently. Water Wipes, however, intend to ensure their customers' skin gets the five-star experience from the word go - eschewing harsh chemicals and sticking to little more than natural H2O. This intimate film communicates that commitment nicely, as it encompasses parents and babies of all skin types.

Nike
"Mercurial Dream Speed"
60s
7 Oct 2020
It seems only yesterday that Cristiano Ronaldo became the most expensive teenager in English football history. Now thirty-five, the Juventus and Portugal forward speaks to the only person capable of replicating his success: himself, of course. What makes this 60” Nike commercial stand out from the fawning crowd is Richard Swarbrick’s painterly animation.

Samsung Galaxy
"Onions"
60s
2 Oct 2020
This engaging love story from Samsung Galaxy may bring audiences to tears... though not for the reasons one might expect. The star-crossed couple in question work at neighbouring eateries and are brought together via an unexpected passion for vegetables - namely, onions. Clinically soppy viewers may be left feeling a bit, er, raw by the end.

Mont Blanc
"What Moves You, Makes You"
60s
2 Oct 2020
This biographical Montblanc ad provides a zippy recap of the life and career of director Spike Lee, incorporating archive footage and shots of the man at work. Aptly enough, Zeynep Orbay and Macie Soler-Sala’s script is narrated like a table read. This may be distracting for some, but the main draw is footage of New York City before, during, and after the 1977 blackout.

BBC Sounds
"To Be Moved"
60s
1 Oct 2020
Fluid VFX and canny sound design make this commercial for BBC Sounds a treat for both the eyes and ears. Director Sam Brown’s camera moves down a busy street, slinking off a bus and into a cafe as people undergo different visual tweaks according to their listening habits. While some characters receive flashy enhancements like zero-gravity hairstyles, it's arguably the more subtle effects that have the most impact.

Yorkshire Tea
"Socially Distancing Teapot"
80s
1 Oct 2020
While it's a ridiculously unnecessary risk to cram workers back into offices mid-pandemic, this fun outing for Yorkshire Tea at least hopes we'll do so safely. Having a cuppa with one's co-workers looks very different in 2020, and the film creatively imagines the, er, lengths one might go to share a proper brew.

Apple Watch
"It Already Does That"
2 mins
25 Sep 2020
Helena Bonham Carter delivers a memorable VO performance in this two-minute Apple Watch commercial, evoking Oscar Isaac’s Nike work from 2016. On paper, Bonham Carter has an easy job...if only the supporting cast would let her get on with it. As The Crown star tries to weave a tale of wrist-based science fiction, she’s constantly thwarted by Apple devotees.

Volvo
"The Parents"
2 mins 26s
29 Sep 2020
This kinetic Volvo commercial makes the most of early parenthood's frantic pace to promote the marque's lane assistance feature. The concept is beautifully realised by director Niclas Larsson, as a couple discover they're having twins and are thrown head-first into childcare. The one constant of their hectic family life? A perpetual shortage of nappies.

John Lewis
"For the Joy of Home"
60s
25 Sep 2020
Despite using The Muppet Show's venerable theme song, this playful 60" John Lewis ad features nary a Kermit, Miss Piggy, or Rowlf the Dog. Instead, the embattled department store presents a game of musical chairs. And tables. And cushions. Like a good-natured haunting, these inanimate objects sneak around the house while the adults furrow their brows. Yet this is no supernatural occurence...

Uber Eats
"Showdown"
45s
24 Sep 2020
Uber Eats have triggered a battle for the ages in their latest ad, as two giants of sci-fi face off about their dinner choices. Perennial internet darling Mark Hamill and glabrous legend Patrick Stewart take opposing stances regarding vegetables: Hamill favours an absolutely tomato-free sandwich while Stewart tauntingly asserts his choice of pasta - liberally adorned with the little red blighters.

FIFA 21
"There is Only One King"
90s
24 Sep 2020
FIFA 21 may be a mixed bag for Leeds United fans this season. On the one hand, United’s Elland Road stadium is, er, missing from the upcoming game. On the other hand, supporters can play as former striker Eric Cantona and pretend he never left for rivals Manchester United. Swings and roundabouts, really.

The King of Underdogs
"1v1"
1 min 33s
23 Sep 2020
China's most famous one-on-one basketball tournament calls 2020 players to action with this intriguing film. The piece adopts a determined tone from the word go, as the narrator discusses self-belief, commitment, and bringing one's A-game despite the naysayers. Director Lennart Brede's visuals are spot-on, leading viewers from rainy, neon-lit streets to sterile libraries, smoggy skylines, and finally, the basketball court.

EDF Energy
"Busy Doing Nothing"
60s
21 Sep 2020
It's hard to describe keeping the nation's lights on during a pandemic as 'doing nothing', but EDF Energy have a different take on the concept in their latest commercial. The 60" film explores what comprises a day in the company's life - from servicing offshore wind turbines to visiting customers in their homes.

confused.com
"Passers-By"
30s
22 Sep 2020
Rhiannon Harper-Rafferty replaces Timothy V. Murphy in the Confused.com driver’s seat, as the brand continue their anti-bedfuddlement campaign. Needless to say, both the website and Harper-Rafferty have their work cut out for them at the moment.

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.