The Super Bowl is kind of like Christmas for those who like to see commercials. The biggest brands flex their advertising muscle but the ironic truth is 364 days of the year most people will tell you they hate watching commercials and resort to skipping them or get up to go to the fridge or the washroom. But when Super Bowl comes around it’s a different story. Those same people will actually be looking forward to seeing the commercials. I’ve read a few different sources about this years crop of ads and the general consensus is they were pretty crappy. Really? I beg to differ. I watched them all and thought there was many good, some great, and one true classic.
Tons of automobile ads are to be expected and they always showcase some of the industry’s best cinematography. For me, best cinematography goes to Chryslers’s ad with Bob Dylan. I think it was an idea of genius to have Bob Dylan be a part of this. He just seems to be the perfect fit and I marvel at the thinking that must have gone into this for coming up with him. About the imagery though, I absolutely love the vintage, documentary look and feel of this spot. The style of cinematography is fitting because it traces Detroit’s automotive heritage. This style has been so popular for some time now but I still can’t get enough of it. It creates a great sense of mood and I’m always on the lookout for an opportunity to do something similar. I know it’s not original to try and “copy” a look but I don’t care. I just love this s**t.
This Jeep ad uses the same documentary, lose style and although the imagery is equally as effective as the Chrysler spot the overall impact is mediocre but it’s worth pointing out another example of this style.
The jeep ad was good, but my personal runner up for best cinematography next to the Chrysler ad is M&M’s, “Delivery”. It’s just beautiful lighting plain and simple. Every frame looks like a painting by Caravaggio. What more is there to say?
This automotive ad by Kia is simply awesome. Some will label it stupid but I really like it. Maybe it’s because I like the movie the “Matrix” or perhaps it’s because the ending gives me shivers down my back every time I see it.
Another cool looking car ad is Maserati’s “Strike”. Typical, visually arresting imagery that features a brooding look and feel. You don’t hear too much from Maserati these days, but this spot just might change that. Mission accomplished.
I liked the Cheerios ad “Gracie” for what it stands for. This ad features and interracial marriage that was broadcast last year with the same cast. It was hugely controversial among the haters out there so what was Cheerio’s response? Do it all over again. A big F-you to the racists. Bravo.
This ad is arguably the most popular and went viral before the Super Bowl but I’m posting it for another reason. I honestly believe this ad features Arnold Schwarzenegger’s best acting performance of his career. Seriously. This ad also has one of the best endings ever.
On the topic of acting I thought these two spots featured some of the best performances from non celebrities.
Question: What’s the number one franchise in North America? Answer: Subway. So what is their excuse for the worst ad of the lot?
My runner-up for best advert broadcast at the 2014 Super Bowl is Volkswagon’s “Wings”. It is a humorous ad that has me laughing every time I see it. Watch it twice to make sure you don’t miss any of the subtle jokes.
My overall favourite ad is an emotional play by the agency, Anomaly, for Budweiser Beer called “Puppy Love”. Beer commercials never fail to pull out all of the stops and in this case there are no girls, no car chases, or any explosions. Just a puppy and a horse. Also, the choice of music is perfect. I defy any animal lover not to cry watching this ad. With 38 million views already on youtube it clearly has hit a chord. Everyone loves puppies and agencies know they can bank on it. Anomaly is probably already looking for a place to hang the multiple awards headed their way. A true classic.