David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Latest Work
    • The Italian job.Italy's failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup has far-reaching consequences, according to this cheeky ad for Chicco baby ware.
    • The art of preparation.This lengthy ode to male and female grooming from Dollar Shave Club may leave significant others amused, bemused, or simply aghast.
    • It's a matter of opinion.Couch pundits everywhere will appreciate this amusing ad for Sky's Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) coverage.
    • Adam Smyth brings a wealth of experience to String and Tins.Sound designer Adam Smyth brings a wealth of experience with him to String and Tins.
    • Rattling Stick’s new beat.Rattling Stick have launched Dirty Work - a roster of new talent, as well as setting up a dedicated music video department with producer Emma Wellbelove at the helm.
    • All good things come to an end.Earlier in the tournament, Park Village's Tom Carty presented a film capturing some of the agony of a being an England fan, and today - after the inevitable reality check of semi-final defeat - he provides with a poignant postscript.
    • Consolation prize.Ostensibly an unofficial hotline for emotionally compromised supporters, FFS England is actually a promotion for DNA testing kits.
    • Facing up to security.This film for Apple - directed with his customary flair by Ringan Ledwidge - focuses on their latest phones' ability to use facial recognition as an alternative to a password that's difficult to remember.
    • The man who saved the world.In this excellent film - the first of a series of six called 'How The World Went Mad' - filmmaker Rupert Russell explores the US collapse of democratic norms through the prism of psychiatric disorder.
    • Dream a little bigger.Portugal's World Cup dreams have been dashed, but this dynamic film suggests that the sport still has the potential to excite.
    • The vital spark.Smart Energy GB are launching a new campaign to get the whole nation using smart meters by 2020.
    • New TricksDirected by Tim Bullock, this Canal+ ad offers viewers a, ahem, fresh take on Christopher Nolan's WWII epic 'Dunkirk'.

CRAFTWORKS

CraftWorks is on its summer break.

The last two events were held in the evening and attendees have been able to offer their full attention without worrying about emails or phone calls.

Because of this, we're going to stick with this slot when it returns in September.

We don't claim to provide a secret formula to help you achieve success in the future - we'll leave that to the snake oil salespeople who charge hundreds to attend dull seminars.

We created it because the industry needs an event which celebrates creativity and craft in an entertaining way. We've achieved that.

Please support us by coming along when you can.


Rattling Stick’s new beat.

Rattling Stick have launched Dirty Work - a roster of new talent, as well as setting up a dedicated music video department with producer Emma Wellbelove at the helm.

Welleblove points out that the promo director's craft is more important than ever: "Music videos are so valuable for all directors. They are an opportunity to up creativity and are a hugely accessible short form in which directors continue to push boundaries."


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Short Films
"Vindaloo"
35s
11 July 2018

Like choosing six number to win the lottery, the World Cup is a prize that looks much easier to achieve than it really is. But no one makes it look harder than England who bring a crippling weight of expectation and an agonising certainty of failure to the task. Watching England trying to win the World Cup is like watching a pack of dogs trying to set a table. Not impossible but...

Earlier in the tournament, Park Village's Tom Carty presented a film capturing some of the agony of a being an England fan, and today - after the inevitable reality check of semi-final defeat - he provides with a poignant postscript. The protagonist of the first film returns and tries to maintain a stiff upper lip as another two years of pain are added to England's wait for major championship glory.


FFS England
"Jimmy"
45s
9 July 2018

Depending on the result of Saturday's third-place play-off against Belgium, England fans may have FFS England on speed dial. Ostensibly an unofficial hotline for emotionally compromised supporters, it's actually a promotion for DNA testing kits - illustrated by one fan's realisation he is actually part-German.

This is one of two films we've seen which heap further misery on the back of England's failure. However would they have predicted that it would end in tears? The gamble hasn't entirely paid off here as it's predicated on the notion that England will be out-performed by Germany... which isn't quite how it worked out.


Apple iPhone
"Memory"
90s
12 July 2018

Data security is a big deal at the moment but the sharp end of the issue hasn't really got anything to do with individuals being hacked. It's the abuse by shady organisations like Cambridge Analytica aided and abetted by digital Leviathans such as Facebook which has been the primary focus, and understandably so.

Personal security is important too though and this film for Apple - directed with his customary flair by Ringan Ledwidge - focuses on their latest phones' ability to use facial recognition as an alternative to a password that's difficult to remember. One way or another, it's an idea which has formed the basis for a few bits of advertising communication but Apple always invests both creatively and financially in a fashion which provides them with the opportunity to take ownership of a notion.

The idea of a man who wins competitions for his ability to remember facts being bamboozled by the need to recall a new password will strike a chord with many, but it's the layers delivered by Ledwidge's outstanding eye that makes this stand out. The opening set-piece looks like a scene from a movie... and a good one at that.


How The World Went Mad
"Diagnosis"
5 mins 42s
10 July 2018

In this excellent film - the first of a series of six called 'How The World Went Mad' - filmmaker Rupert Russell explores the collapse of democratic norms in the US through the prism of psychiatric disorder. Recalling an experiment which involved researchers entering asylums to determine how easy or difficult it is to persuade medics and other staff that you don't belong, Russell reveals there is a fine line between what's perceived to be sane and insane.

Russell has a real gift for presenting complex ideas in a fashion which may break through the resistance of those who prefer simplistic, flawed solutions to the world's difficulties. Although this is clearly a partizan film, presenting - as it does - Donald Trump's election as a demonstration of a world gone mad, its lateral approach to the subject makes it seem less directly critical of those who supported him.

It's crucial that we begin to value a more conciliatory approach. It's hard to think of another situation where the victims of a con trick have been persistently vilified for being fooled. Instead of insulting those taken in by Trump's bluster, we need to start explaining why their view of him is mistaken. Within this sequence of short films, Rupert Russell has unveiled a style which may help us achieve this and DAVID would love to see these films achieve a wider audience. With the wind in their sails, they might just save the world.


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On This Day
(1-25 of 25)

Nike
"Short A Guy"
90s
16 Jul 2015
The concept of a timeout doesn't apply in this exhilarating ad for Nike. A skate down the street leads one athletic kid to become the extra man for one team sport after another. In a flash, he's kitted up and ready to go. Having grown used to Nike and other brands focusing their attention on the big guns of basketball and both kinds of football, it's refreshing to see sports like volleyball and lacrosse receive their frenetic moment in the spotlight too.

Sky Sports
"Greatest Moments"
90s
16 Jul 2015
Sky and the English Premier League have been synonymous since 1992 and to mark the upcoming 2015/16 season, Thierry Henry walks through some of the league's most iconic moments. It's a great way of adding a fresh twist to so many familiar moments, with Henry revisiting everything from the Liverpool-Newcastle thriller of '96 to his own historic unbeaten season as a player.

Tango
"Boo Tang Enhancer"
3 mins 20s
16 Jul 2015
This campaign has really established itself quickly, and the online clips which spoof channels like QVC are terrific. This is our favourite for its sublime blend of ridiculousness and authenticity. The spot-on casting makes the discussion of the 'Boo Tang Enhancement Package' even funnier ("I have a similar box at home and I keep cheese in it.") - the yawning chasms of awkward silences plastered

Channel 4
"Underdog"
90s
16 Jul 2015
The "scrappy, feisty" station that is Channel 4 has made this lovely spot to justify its very raison d'ętre. And very eloquently it's been done too despite the fact that the interviewer in search of answers is a dog in a suit. Well-known C4 faces - from Jon Snow and Kevin McCloud to Katherine Parkinson and Gogglebox's own Siddiqui family - feed us snippets of information while our interviewer eats his microphone.

KFC
"The Whole Chicken"
60s
16 Jul 2017
When you see that someone has been credited as 'chicken choreographer' you know that you're about to watch something out of left field. And so it proved when DAVID hit the play button and discovered what Mother is doing for the first KFC television campaign since they won the account.

Clerical Medical
"Where the Heart Is Sponsorship"
75s
16 Jul 2006
Mischievous oldies are depicted in this amusing sponsorship slots which use dolls to replace live actors in a cunning plan to deliver the films for a very reasonable budget while adding to rather than detracting from their comic effectiveness.

Dodge Caliber
"Anything But Cute"
30s
16 Jul 2006
A bunch of puppets offer their verdict on the new Dodge Caliber. They have grave reservations because it is not a cute and cuddly car... indeed, one of them goes so far as to suggest it made her wet her pants. Fortunately this was exactly the response the focus group was looking for.

Pimm's
"Festival"
20s
16 Jul 2007
Alexander Amstrong brings his unique posh anarchy to a music festival were, typically, he eschews the conventions of the event by bringing the trappings of luxury via hot air balloon. The regulars are won over when he starts dishing out the Pimm's.

Anta Sport
"Runner"
60s
16 Jul 2007
China is clearly getting ready for next year's Olympics and this ad gives some sense of the jubilation each medal won by the hosts will generate. The whole nation seems to stop in its tracks to celebrate an unseen victory. Meanwhile a lone athlete trains in the hope it will, one day, be he.

The Guardian
"Beach Dude"
10s
16 Jul 2007
Another skilful use of a meagre budget for the UK's only newspaper contrasts the new British approach to the beach with the old in cunning fashion as a surfer heading towards the sea and is converted into a less edifying beach dweller as he passes a deckchair.

Andrex
"Car"
20s
16 Jul 2007
A more stylish presentation than we have been accustomed to from this advertiser shows what happens when a child in a car gets hold of one of the new longer toilet rolls... the youngster trails the stuff out of the window giving the appearance of a massive white tail.

Cancerfonden (Sweden)
"Insect"
45s
16 Jul 2007
The idea that cancer research can provide hope is conveyed in unusual fashion in this film from Sweden which shows how an insect that has stunned itself by flying into a lab window survives long enough to be revived by a breath of fresh air and is then able to fly away into the fields.

B Sky B
"Evan Almighty"
30s
16 Jul 2007
American comedy actor Steve Carrell gets to promote his new movie and save the planet in this specially commissioned spot which exploits the distinctive skills of Sherbet director Matt Abbiss to annotated footage of Carrell speaking to underline everything he says... and then some.

Channel 4 News
"Why?"
60s
16 Jul 2007
For all the criticism of the dumbing down of Channel 4's output (much of which is justified), it can be offset in generous proportions by the station's superb news programming. Anchored in every sense by Jon Snow, it is a beacon of integrity and this is captured beautifully in this trail.

Learning & Skills Council
"Train To Gain"
30s
16 Jul 2007
Another outing for the innovative technique from the previous ad has a speeding lorry made out of a fist to illustrate how a business can be making its way along swimmingly. But without a trained workforce it will flounder, so it's time for business to make its contribution.

Ford Fiesta
"Dogbot In The Snow"
30s
16 Jul 2007
DAVID has a bit of a soft spot for the dogbot ads. The slapstick here is cleverly realised and setting it off by having the artificial beast adhering its tongue to its frozen hind-quarters was inspired. More importantly, all this messing about is used to make a substantial product claim.

RAF
"Components"
40s
16 Jul 2007
The RAF attempts to once gain tackle the perennial problem they face when recruiting that those minded to join the forces imagine that if they don't want to be a pilot then the RAF is not for them. A very dramatic device is used here to illustrate that the RAF needs capable personnel who are not seeking wings.

BUPA
"Pam and Ron"
30s
16 Jul 2007
Another animated excursion for BUPA tells how Pam and Ron parked Pam's 80-year old mother at a BUPA care home so they could take a holiday in Italy. The old dear had such a wonderful time there that she thought about sending them a postcard... well, they can get confused at that age.

Trocaire
"Interview"
40s
16 Jul 2009
This film for an Irish charity which operates in the Third World takes the form of an interview for a new worker. The employer lists the various abuses which the worker will face in a candid fashion before the camera reveals the most shocking part of all. The employer lists the various abuses which the worker will face in a candid fashion before the camera reveals the most shocking part of all.

Go Sky Ride
"Get Back On Your Bike"
30s
16 Jul 2010
Sky is promoting a scheme which will enable cyclists to enjoy the freedom of the city streets by banning cars for a while. Some of the recent marketing tie-ins are inexplicable and this has to count among them.

ESPN - Nascar
"Invincible"
60s
16 Jul 2010
MJZ's Rupert Sanders makes brilliant use of special effects in this American ad for one of the US's premier racing car events. A gravelly voiceover rather undermines the overall impact but if you wholly concentrate on the visuals then it's dazzling.

Mazda MX5
"Once Driven Thrills Are Harder To Find - Buffalo"
20s
16 Jul 2010
One of a pair of new ads which seek to demonstrate that you'll need to find new ways of getting a high after you've driven the advertised car. A pair of men whoop it up as they ride bison in a charging herd in a desperate bid for excitement.

Mazda MX5
"Once Driven Thrills Are Harder To Find - Whale"
20s
16 Jul 2010
One of a pair of new ads which seek to demonstrate that you'll need to find new ways of getting a high after you've driven the advertised car. In this execution, a man takes a dramatic ride aboard a whale thanks to some clever post-production jiggery-pokery.

Sky
"Eric Cantona"
60s
16 Jul 2010
Eric Cantona is cleverly superimposed into moments of sporting history allowing the footballer turned actor to pass comment from the sidelines. Cantona is compelling as ever and the technique is clever... and he even gets to make a joke about seagulls.

Kellogg's Crunchy Nut
"Snake"
30s
16 Jul 2012
An Australian team is attempting to deal with a deadly snake in the latest ad for Kellogg's Crunchy Nut. The irresistibility of the product is the focus once again as the need for complete quiet is inevitably defeated by a member of the crew being unable to resist the temptation.

On This Day
(1-25 of 25)

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