Home > marketing ramblings > The golden age of cinema advertising

The golden age of cinema advertising

I went to the cinema today. Every six months I treat myself to an extended lunch hour and watch a film, and today was treat day. The Social Network: very enjoyable thanks. Who knew nerds ruled the world?

Anyway, I digress. My point: what has happened to cinema ads? Time was that the fifteen minutes before the film started would contain more laughs and better production values than the feature that followed. Think back to Diamond White cider, or the early Stella spots. Today…blimey. Now I am no Eurosceptic; hell, I speak French poorly and can swear in German. But my bouche nearly hit the floor after an EU-funded 30 second ad for agriculture. Agriculture? Who decided to make a commercial for agriculture? What action do the advertisers want me to take? Leave the cinema and buy a combine harvester?

And no sooner had I thought “that’s going on the blog” than I found myself even more agog as the three minute plus opus for Estrella beer unfolded before me.

Threesomes! Nudity! Truly terrible music! The mother of all shoots (by the look of it)! A creative director with bollocks the size of space hoppers! (“Yes, it’s three minutes forty seconds long. Yes, I think I can get it through the ASA. Yes, the girls will need to wear bikinis at the casting.”) As far as I know, it’s still not allowed to link beer with sexual prowess but there’s clearly a different rule relating to masturbation fantasies.

Still – good luck to them. I am envious on so many levels: imagine being in the meeting where they persuaded the client that lame song would work…

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