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Life’s Family Carousel

This is one of my favourite advertising themes of all time involving human truths of family relationships that can often be highly entertaining or engagingly insightful.

For filmmakers and their casts, it’s a timeless storytelling theme that abounds with memorable character portrayal opportunities.

1. POBAGM, ‘Mum, Dad, I Have Something to Tell You’

Advertising Agency: Muhtayzik Hoffer, San Francisco, USA

Directed by filmmaker John Matejcyk, this humorously understated scenario is superbly enacted by great cast.

The ‘Dad’s’ performance is particularly amusing as he casts his eyes around a room filled with Objet d’art, that all seem very, very, strange to him.

2. Plenty Paper Towels, Xmess

Advertising Agency: AMV BBDO, London, UK

Directed by filmmaker Steve Rogers, the Plenty ‘Xmess’ scenario insightfully centres on the human truth that Christmas for many families, represents an extremely stressful time of the year that is anything but jolly.

The amusing depictions of a family gathering, and ensuing ‘messy’ events, that includes removing tinsel stuck to cat’s bottom, are presented with radical honesty.

On the ‘Muse by Clio’ portal, Martina Poulopati, Global Marketing Director at Plenty’s parent company Essity, commented;

“The reality is that life with our loved ones is messy, occasionally yucky, and sometimes downright revolting. But that’s what real love is: when you invite people into your life, you accept the collateral damage.”

The soundtrack of “Love Hurts”, by Scottish hard rock band Nazareth, adds entertaining support to a highly watchable commercial that calls the saying to mind; ‘you can choose your friends, but you can’t choose you family’.

3. Bouygues Telecom, Groovy Dad

Advertising Agency: BETC, Paris, France

Directed by filmmaker Martin Werner, for the Paris based, mobile network operator, and internet service provider, Bouygues Telecom, the scenario is about a Dad who loves to ‘groove’ to Redbone’s ‘Come and get your love’ from the movie, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’.

The inspired commercial depicts a generational story, that is charmingly entertaining.

4. Nestle, Share Your Goodness

Advertising Agency: McCann Erickson, Mumbai, India

Directed filmmaker by Prakash Varma, this sensitively observed scenario is about a family adapting to the inclusion of an adopted young newcomer.

Prakash Varmer’s depictions of a young boy’s personal journey in overcoming his feelings of insecurity, to a heartwarming, bonding-acceptance of his adopted little sister, not only took India by storm, it also reverberated globally.

Nestle’s ‘Share Your Goodness’ commercial is filmic storytelling at its best with remarkable performances by the adorable young stars.

5. Bell’s Whisky, The Reader

Advertising Agency: King James, Cape Town, South Africa

The compelling scenario was directed by filmmaker Greg Grey, who brought the excellently portrayed story of familial pride to emotive life.

The Bell’s Whisky campaign’s selling line, “Give that man a Bell’s”, is an imbedded social culture catchphrase in South Africa, for honouring noble achievements, with raised glasses of Scotland’s finest.

6. HelloFlo and Always, First Moon Party

Written and directed by Jamie McClelland and Pete Marquis, this scenario is a lighthearted, insightful and bravely candid depiction of how one Mum coped with the emotionally delicate phase of her daughter’s biological development and peer group pressure.

Interspersed with humorous anecdotal scenes, and excellent cast performances, the commercial is highly memorable and filmic.

7. V/Line, Guilt Trips

Advertising Agency: McCann, Melbourne, Australia

Directed by filmmaker Damien Toogood, the insightful concept for V/Line, the Regional Transport Company in Victoria, Australia, centres on the guilt one is made to feel, for not spending as much time with parents as they would like.

Many parents, living in rural Australia, find that once their children have flown the nest for distant city-hub occupations, visit’s back home to see their ‘lonely old folks’, become disappointingly rare.

This campaign is about how one mum amusingly found a solution, guilt.

The commercial was part of a carefully planned, integrated, multi-media brand promotion, that won a Cannes Lion Grand Prix for Creative Effectiveness.

8. McDonald’s, Cravings

Advertising Agency: DDB, Sydney, Australia

‘Cravings’ is part of McDonald’s, or ‘Macca’s, as it is fondly called in Australia, ongoing “We’ll be here” communication campaign.

Directed by filmmaker Christopher Rigget, the scenario of a Mum’s longing desire for a grandchild is an endearing story of familial love and McDonald’s brand affinity.