David Reviews

 It's the work, stupid.

Latest Work
    • NSFP (Not Safe For Plates)'Food porn' takes on a whole new meaning in this ribald short film from Seed Animation.
    • The Man in ChargeITV explore character archetypes in an excellent new series of ads for their drama output.
    • Love at first sight.Adland's pantheon of bathrobe-clad blokes receives a new addition courtesy of this dulcet Wren commercial.
    • Give them a game.This poignant short film looks at the plight of Italians of African descent who are effectively stateless because of Italy's refusal to automatically recognise as citizens those who are born there.
    • Papaya launch Young Directors CompetitionPapaya Films have launched the sixth edition of their Young Directors Competition.
    • Sweet DreamsA night club designed for sleeping - no, it's not the latest Millennial fad, it's the premise of this quirky ad for IKEA.
    • Lyft Your SpiritsA guy fulfils the dreams of many commuters in this entertaining ad for ride-sharing app Lyft.
    • This Is My Truth, Tell Me YoursThis excellent ad for the New York Times follows in the footsteps of previous ads, but its length enables us to appreciate in full the sheer effort that goes into producing a story.
    • The most offended a man can get.Gillette has received significant backlash for its new slogan, swapping 'The best a man can get' for 'The best a man can be'.
    • First contact.A welcome return for Babbel's resident spokes-alien finds Alexi in a spot of bother.
    • Boss Mentality Bosch breathe life into an old meme in this entertaining ad, which draws attention to their range of smart products.


We have great news for fans of CraftWorks. 2019 will see it return in a multitude of different formats.

These will include several shows at BAFTA in London - the first being on Monday, February 11th.

Watch this space for further announcements.

There are sponsorship opportunites associated with its return, please contact Jason Stone on 0141 776 7766 if you'd like to know more.

Alan Friel joins Dark Energy.

Dark Energy's ongoing talent search has now led them to seasoned filmmaker Alan Friel.

A commercials director and maker of short films by trade, the Irishman remains committed to the art of what he calls "storytelling and make-believe" after a string of high-profile ad campaigns and acclaimed side projects.


Truth Project
"Speech Bubbles"
14 January 2019

The Truth Project have released this hard-hitting ad about speaking out against sexual abuse. Set up in response to the Government Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), the organisation attempts to break the culture of silence around historic abuse, creating an environment where survivors can speak up and be heard.

MullenLowe's accompanying film carries a potent sense of foreboding, as it flits between scenes with one one common thread: blank speech bubbles above characters' heads. This effect was achieved in-camera by director Chris Palmer, and as a result the balloons move as they catch the wind.

It's a striking effect, and one which makes the organisation's message extremely clear - anyone could have such a past looming over them, and they all deserve to be listened to and believed.

"Color Flood"
12 January 2019

Apple encourage customers to fully embrace colour with this visually arresting ad. Boasting a substantial cast of freerunners with Prague as their playground, it's yet another memorable outing for the tech giant. One that looks like it could be the Crystal Skull in relation to the Sony Bravia trio from the mid-noughties.

Directed by Rupert Sanders, the tightly-choreographed film has a surreal feel as waves of brightly-coloured jumpsuits create moving works of art. The choice of song (Cosmo Sheldrake's 'Come Along') may seem incongruous at first, but the track brings an added sense of whimsy to proceedings.

Naturally, some consumers may need more persuasion to drop upwards of $700 on the iPhone XR, but this attractive effort nonetheless provides a spirited introduction to the new model's potential

BBC Sport
"Six Nations 2019"
14 January 2019

This is a change of pace for the Beeb's pre-Six Nations advertising drive, as the channel ditch fan testimonials and match footage in favour of tackling the winter blues. Guided by director Elliot Dear's sure hand, the 30" trail introduces a rugby ball to the likes of cough syrup, bathroom scales, and post-festive budgets (represented here by a piggy bank).

As these seasonal linchpins are smashed to smithereens, the ad suggests the BBC's live-but-not-quite-exclusive coverage of England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, France, and Italy will see viewers right. After all, what better way to mark hibernation's end than with a few thirty-man scrums?

"100 Years"
12 January 2019

While the rest of us look to the future with mounting trepidation, Tesco revel in past glories with this 30" commercial. Propelled by Earth, Wind & Fire's ‘September', the ad from BBH and directors The Sacred Egg plonks shoppers from the past hundred years into one of Blue Supermarket's branches.

From mods to roller disco divas, hair guitar bands and monochrome housewives, the cast wend their way through the weekly shop with varying grades and visual flourishes. However, it's the yellow on-screen discount stickers that threaten to steal the show.

The brand's sudden emphasis on price points show it's keen to wrest consumers from the sector's budget upstarts. Even so, we doubt that permits fans of ‘Quadrophenia' to peruse the aisles via moped.


On This Day
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British Heart Foundation
18 Jan 2010
As the camera maintains a fixed examination of a young woman's face, her voice reveals the torment she has been put through by her father's death and her mother's illness. This calculatedly emotional piece will deservedly raise awareness of the charity's work.

18 Jan 2013
This charming commercial for Guinness offers the point of view of a clock that's decided to do more than simply tick tock onwards in a uniform fashion. Three illustrations of its ability to manipulate time demonstrate how its actions improve the lives of those who dwell in the small town that it dominates. Lovely.

"Gangnam Style"
18 Jan 2013
Trumpeted as the first commercial for an electronic cigarette (despite a bid by a rival to snatch this honour by airing a spoiler on one of Channel 5's sister stations) this ad is necessarily opaque because of the strict regulations. Punters will have to figure out for themselves how the advertised product would have helped dad (Mark Benton) witness his baby's first Gangnam parody.

Open University
"A New Direction"
18 Jan 2013
A woman called Ruth describes how she found fulfilment after learning how to paint in this attractively piece advertising the Open University. It's a shame that nobody explained the difference between uninterested and disinterested to her but you can't have everything and it's a good bit of work.

Honda Civic
18 Jan 2013
A neat device is used to highlight the versatility of the advertised car. Why can't a single vehicle be both powerful and practical? Agile and efficient? And so on. The questions are posed by Garrison Keillor (or "that bloke off the Honday ads" as he's better known in this country) and rather artfully answered by a flipping technique. (That's a technique that flips... not a flipping technique.)

18 Jan 2014
There are shades of a famous scene from The Full Monty in this commercial for Cadbury as Logistics Manager Keith slowly succumbs to the seductive sound of Baccara's Yes Sir, I Can Boogie when it's broadcast on his phone as he waits for his call to be taken.

"Dave's Epic Strut"
18 Jan 2015
This campaign has delivered some memorable ads, but this has to be the best yet for sheer eyeball-grabbing, attention-seeking mischief. A guy gets out of his car and strides down the street with a purposeful twinkle last sported by John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever. What's he looking so pleased about? He's saved money with the site in question. But that's not all...

Red Cross
"The Promise"
18 Jan 2016
In their latest US film, the Red Cross has a powerful answer for those who believe charity should begin at home and therefore don't donate because they worry the funds will be squandered on ungrateful foreigners who wish them harm. Because this spot points out that the Red Cross also offers assistance to locals who are imperiled - something even the most internationalist of givers may be impressed to learn.

18 Jan 2016
This beautifully composed 30" commercial for Gumtree has a dad speculating about the chain of events he could trigger by buying a second-hand piano for his daughter. In his mind's eye, the endless practice that follows her delight leads to fame, success and a bright future. He's quickly brought back down to earth but his flight of fancy is really quite charming.

Pizza Hut
"Big Deal"
18 Jan 2016
A variety of strange and eccentric customers find their remarkable circumstances pale in significance when compared to Pizza Hut's £14 meal deal. Faced with a boxed banquet like that, being struck by lightning, freeing oneself from your ventriloquist's controlling influence, or having the power of magnetism does seem rather humdrum.

"Food Dancing"
18 Jan 2017
Something interesting always happens when an agency like W+K gets into bed with a client like Sainsbury's and so it proves with the agency's début TV work for its big new client. Orange Supermarket has been placed at the forefront of a new movement called #fooddancing by an ad with an earwormy soundtrack from MysDiggi combined with a montage that's been made to look as though it's been clandestinely filmed in our actual kitchens.

The Jump
"Flying Without Wings"
18 Jan 2017
This promo for Channel 4's beleaguered reality show 'The Jump' features the plangent vocals of Westlife. 'Flying Without Wings' accompanies shots of this year's batch of celebrities flying over a snowy landscape, with appropriately transcendent expressions as they perform improbable acrobatic feats.

18 Jan 2006
Beautifully filmed commercial shows how the fish caught on behalf of Young's makes its way to your dinnerplate from the various fishing grounds around the World. Okay, so it's an over-romanticised vision but it's a nice thought. Piped version of "When The Boat Comes In" accompanies perfectly.

Careers Scotland
"Barbara The Oracle"
18 Jan 2006
As in previous ad in series someone is shown seeking careers advice from a very dubious source - this time, it's a woman who dwells in a cave, albeit one styled like a 1970s bedroom. Appropriate careers advice is available through this publicly-funded body.

"Pub Quiz Team"
18 Jan 2007
Finally the definitive version of the lengthy ident for More4 which establishes the cleverness of four of its presenters by placing them as a demon team turning up for a Pub Quiz Night. They come unstuck on a low-brow question and ring around their mates (though you can't fool us with the Jon Stewart clip).

18 Jan 2008
Nicely played commercial for McDonald's from Canada has a man offering to trade his beard for one of the special collector cards featuring ice hockey players available at the fast food restaurant. It's the deadpan delivery that makes this one worthwhile.

18 Jan 2008
Animated commercial depicts various athletes limbering up for the Olympic games in Beijing. The idea here is to remind people that behind each athlete is a team of people upon whom they depend and this is illustrated in suitably impressive style.

MTV Switch
"Al Gore"
18 Jan 2008
An audio excerpt from Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth is married with specially filmed material to remind MTV viewers of the importance of doing what ever we can to protect the environment. Gore himself approved the footage.

"Wake Up Call"
18 Jan 2008
Shades of Groundhog Day here as a man spends his entire life being woken at seven o'clock. Thank heavens he invested in an AMF pension and is able to sleep properly on the mornings once he has retired. It's a pretty bleak look at the years up to retirement nonetheless.

Oat So Simple
"Hair Dryer"
18 Jan 2009
A woman pops her Oat So Simple into the microwave before turning on her hair-dryer. To illustrate the simplicity of the advertised product, her hair is instantly dry and perfect... if only everything was as easy as Oat So Simple (or Carlsberg made hair-dryers.)

Sky Movies
"Friday Nights"
18 Jan 2010
This attractively-filmed commercial for Sky Movies shows people getting ready for the weekend on a Friday evening before settling down in front of the television to enjoy a movie on the advertised service. Apparently, Sky HD's premières are now shown on Friday.

Cadbury Crème Eggs
"Newton's Cradle"
18 Jan 2010
This ad for Cadbury Crème Eggs shows another of the little critters devising a method to bring about its demise. It deftly slides between the balls of a Newton's Cradle while they are in mid-swing and is crushed between them.

"Cheer Up"
18 Jan 2010
This cute Irish commercial for Vodafone demonstrates how social networking can be used for something much better than the recruitment of musicians for a big dreary band. A young woman cheers up her community with strategically-placed knitwear.

18 Jan 2010
It's hard to know for certain whether this is a commercial for Peugeot or for the latest offering from the Ministry of Sound. A collection of vehicles which inspired the latest model from the French car manufacturer explode into their component parts.

18 Jan 2010
You wouldn't have thought it possible to make a summer meadow look too idyllic but this appears to have been achieved by this Irish commercial. It's all just too perfect and makes us wonder whether this was filmed in Stepford.

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