Ad Review: Cannes Lions 2016 Winners - Part 1

It’s that time of year where advertising’s answer to the Oscars has made it rounds. I’m talking about the Cannes Lions 2016 fest. There seems to have been a lot more activity behind this year’s event and a helluva lot more promo and reporting updates on social media. But onto the good stuff, the winners of this year’s competition.

This list is pretty straight forward. I’ll be looking at who won what and give me two pence (cents if you’re American) on how good (or bad) they are. I am however, not going to include every single Bronze, Silver & Gold Lion winner and all the categories. There isn’t enough time in a working day to go through them all. So I’ll be selective. I’ll only reviewing the Gold & Grand Prix winners and and the following categories:

  • Creative Data
  • Creative Effectiveness
  • Design
  • Digital Craft
  • Entertainment
  • Integrated
  • Media
  • Outdoor
  • PR
  • Print & Publishing
  • Promo & Activation
  • Radio
  • Titanium

 

There is so many adverts to go through that I’ll be splitting up the categories over 3 blog posts. The categories covered in this section will be creative effectiveness, design, digital craft & outdoor. So…..without further adu.

Creative Effectiveness

Brand: John Lewis

Name: Monty’s Christmas

Agency: adam&eveDDB London

Country: UK

Award: Grand Prix

Verdict: One year and six months later and everyone still remembers this advert quite clearly. John Lewis is that good. No surprise that adam&eveDDB won this award. These guys know their the business. Kudos to them and JL for bringing the FEELS again with this classic ad campaign.

Grade: A

Brand: Old Spice

Name: Smellcome to Manhood

Agency: Wieden+Kennedy Portland

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: LOL! I forgot how funny this advert is. Old Spice are known for putting out ridiculous and memorable adverts (who could forget Isaiah Mustafa and that horse?) I think this was one of the Superbowl ads from 2015 Old Spice put out so it is a lil’ long in the tooth (at least in ad world anyway) but it’s still a good’un. I do wonder how the managed to make that mom pop out the sofa cushion and glide across the floor. It’s so cartoonish and over the top. I love it.

Grade: A

Brand: The Economist

Name: Raising Eyebrows & Subscriptions

Agency: Proximity London

Country: UK

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: I remember doing a previous post where I had saw one of these Economist ads for the first time. Granted it’s not the same as these web-based targeted ads but I was impressed. I don’t read the Economist, it always seemed like the kind of publication that only really smart people diligently read. But after seeing those ads I was intrigued and pleasantly surprised by the copy and the way it was put together. Now after seeing this case study video by Proximity, I think its downright genius. Brilliant use of existing data and new consumer data and loved the way they create banners & ads in relation to trending stories in realtime. Or as close to real-time as one can get. Plus picking out key words or quotes to create and/or forward targeted banners is fantastic too. As a consumer I use Adblock like its washing-up liquid. But from a marketing point of view, it’s pretty damn good. It upped their previous membership numbers and made the Economist more, dare I say, hip? No, engaging. That’s a much better word.

Grade: A+

 

Design

Brand: Kurashiki Central Hospital

Name: Surgeon Tryouts

Agency: TBWA\Hakuhodo Tokyo

Country: Japan

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Is it weird I got goosebumps from watching this? I felt so nervous for these young adults and in my head I was cheering them on to do well. Those missions looked absolutely intense and nerve-racking! But the concept and fruition of this idea is beyond amazing. I love how they took these medical trainees outside their comfort zone and put a new spin on surgical procedures. We honestly don’t give doctors and nurses enough credit. Did you see how hard that was? Now imagine if they were working on actual humans. After seeing this, I’m happy TBWA\Hakuhodo Tokyo won a Gold Lion. Thoroughly deserved.

Grade: A+

Brand: IBM

Name: Art with Watson

Agency: Ogilvy & Mather New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: And who said art is dead. I wasn’t quite to sure what to expect with this IBM Watson machine but it’s a pretty cool collaboration between IBM and those featured artists. With different mediums from sketching and paint, to 3d modelling and illustration, the finished pieces looked fantastic. I do believe its true that an artist or designer should know how to create and draw in the traditional sense. But with tech like Watson and other computers and machines, it has already opened up a whole new dimension of art. And that dimension will only continue to expand.

Grade: A-

Brand: Warsaw Rising Museum

Name: Quantum of Peace

Agency: Pangenerator, Warsaw

Country: Poland

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: I got chills watching that video. So potent and effective. Loved the backing instrumental track, loved the installation even more. Using actual bullets to convey the statistic numbers alongside the historic facts of the Warsaw Rising & WWII period is chillingly beautiful. There’s a air of sadness about it but it sends a powerful message about the ravages of war and how we as human ought to learn from it.

Grade: A

Brand: Intel

Name: Lady Gaga + Intel Performance

Agency: Intel, Santa Clara

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Okay I used to adore this woman. Nowadays I can’t stand her, so I tried to put aside my angst for the sake of the Intel’s ad campaign video. Now both Intel and the Haus of Gaga teaming up makes sense, as she isn’t a stranger to trying to push boundaries and incorporate tech. But having already been familiar with the not-so flattering reviews of the Grammys performance, I wasn’t holding out for much hope. I never watched any of the performances this year and after seeing it, I could barely watch all of it. Intel’s use projection was okay but not really that ground-breaking and I found it a bit much. I was actually more impressed by the end scenes where you saw Gaga rocking some tech-shades, the robotic-piano (the real star of that performance) and those other quick-preview frames at the end. I would have liked to have seen more of that.

Grade: C+


Brand: Lockheed Martin

Name: The Field Trip to Mars

Agency: McCann, New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Now this idea I like. Where was this tech when I was growing up? I would have paid more attention in class, or in this case, on the bus. I think this idea is a great way to get kids involved in science and space by creating a simulating environment that immerses them in it. It’s all very visual and geeky and it’s wicked awesome. My guess is that they used virtual reality to create a similar, interactive experience for the kids on that bus. Apparently there’s even an app that goes along with it.

Grade: A-

Brand: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Australia

Name: Behind The Leather

Agency: Olgivy & Mather, Bangkok

Country: Thailand

Award: Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: Now before you watch, PETA are good for bringing the grossness of animal cruelty. And I think they’ve outdone themselves. Shocking isn’t even the word. This advert is truly remarkable. Everything from the concept, to the production, to the stage setting, to even the customers’ reaction is just flawless. I never understood the lust for snake or crocodile-skin bags and such. But that video really brings home the ugly underbelly of exotic skin clothing industry, as it should. Hell, I’m surprised O&M Bangkok only one 2 Gold Lions. Give them ALL the awards!

Grade: A+

Brand: Prodiss

Name: Ma Place est dans La Salle

Agency: Fred & Farid, Paris

Country: France

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: I didn’t know what to expect with this advert. It’s just in every sense of the word, fantastic! The terror-attack on France last November was horrific and it put the country on an even higher terror alert and fears increased exponentially. It got so bad that the culture performance industry was struggling. Cinemas, theatres, concerts, plays, one man shows, the attendance was rapidly declining. The phrase ‘Ma Place est dans La Salle’ (My Place is at The Show’) spread like wildfire, both online and off. Circulating the media outlets, injected with celebrity support and championed by local businesses and professionals, it breathe back confidence and diligence into the French populace. The message went beyond France and recieved global support in solidarity. The video is inspiring and I love, LOVE how they used John Ottoman’s Hope track from X-Men’s DOFP.

Grade: A+

Brand: Kamoi Kakoshi Co.

Name: MT EXPO 2015/MT EX Yokohama/MT EX 3331

Agency: Iyamadesign, Tokyo

Country: Japan

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x3)

Verdict: It’s so wildly creative it just makes your inner artiste fangirl. Amazing video from Iyamadesign. You can tell that must have taken DAYS to masking-tape the whole damn place. But it looked spectacular at the end of it. Who knew something as simple as masking tape could be used to create something ridiculously beautiful? You can view the EX 3331 ad here

Grade: A+

Brand: Art Institute of Chicago

Name: Van Gogh BnB

Agency: Leo Burnett, Chicago

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Such an amazing concept and viral campaign. Talk about life imitating art. How awesome would it be to actually stay in the Van Gogh room? Wonderful collaboration between Leo Burnett, AI of Chicago & Airbnb. The room also has somehow managed to become equally exclusive and inclusive.

Grade: A-

Brand: Narita International Airport Corporation

Name: Narita International Airport Terminal 3

Agency: Party, Tokyo

Country: Japan

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: It’s nice to see Party win an award that seemed to encompass more than just an ad video or some print work. They were heavily involved with Narita International Airport’s Terminal 3 to the point where they had a say on furniture, signage, planning and they even threw running tracks into the mix (which was a nice touch). They seemed to do a good job considering their main focus was to delivery a high-quality result without the high price-tag. But I personally found it a bit underwhelming, although I am not dismissing their efforts, which must have been time-consuming and diligent.

Grade: B-

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Brand: McDonald’s

Name: Originals

Agency: TWBA, Paris

Country: France

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Print ads made simple. In the age of emojis, it’s no complete surprise McDonalds went down this route. I mean they’ve been there before, more than once. Sometimes all you need is just a visual. And when you see what seems like emoticons of burgers, fries, icecream etc, that usually means fast food and what fast food joint comes to mind straight away? Whether you eat there or not…Mc Donald’s, but of course.

Grade: B+

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Brand: Sydney Opera House

Name: Shifting Perspectives

Agency: Interbrand Australia, Sydney

Country: Australia

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: See now, if you just looked at the image and didn’t watch the video, you’d think it was a pretty typeface that probably didn’t take that long to do. *Red buzzer noise* Wrong. Using the Sydney Opera house as its main focal point, as well as referencing contours, both architecture and body, Interbrand looked like they spent weeks developing this unique typeface that is made after the Opera House’s own image. It really is quite stunning.

Grade: B+

Brand: Falter Newspaper

Name: Falter/Inferno

Agency: Jung von Matt, Hamburg

Country: Germany

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Two words. Dark horse. This advert is visually arresting to the point I had to re-watch it because it was just that damn good! Didn’t know what to expect with this but I love every second of it. Considering the current climate of today’s events, whether its political, environmental, big corporate, mass surveillance, extremist uprises, tech domination or whatever, it’s sometimes a little too much to bare or even digest. Falter obviously has gone out of their way to prove that despite all the unease and unrest in today’s world, they will be there as a constant. A reliable source of news and information, no matter how bleak the news may be. The concept, animation, music, the DRAMA, I love it all.

Grade: A+

Brand: Papawin Co.

Name: Artquarium

Agency: Olgivy & Mather, Bangkok

Country: Thailand

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: O&G Bangkok have done it again! I adore this ad video. The campaign is genius because we all know paper is pretty boring to try and sell as a product, despite its necessity. But this puts such a creative spin on it that I still feel a lil’ dizzy after watching it, but in a good way. It’s a helluva way to proof how waterproof that paper is. Job done boys and girls! Take a pound out the tin and go home, as Nigel would say. Brilliant. I won’t spoil the ending either but I though their inclusion was a lovely touch.

Grade: A+

Brand: Microsoft

Name: Delqa

Agency: Listen, New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Looks intriguing right?? Be sure to check out the behind the scenes video here.  It’s definitely enlightening. This concept is so beyond beautiful, cool and insane that I honestly think its in a class of its own. Music is everything, without it we wouldn’t be able to feel or process certain thoughts, emotions or even actions. But this opens up a whole new realm of experiencing music itself. My God I would do almost anything to experience that exhibit! It’s looks both euphoric and haunting. Who knew Microsoft’s Kinect could be used in this way?

Grade: A+

Brand: American Honda Motor Company

Name: Paper

Agency: RPA, Santa Monica

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Wasn’t quite what to expect with this as some Honda advert are amazing and others, well, not as much. This one is without a doubt, the former. There must have been so many hours poured into this advert but oh my word it is stunning! It was enjoyable to watch and intriguing to see what would follow next. Plus it’s a pleasant reminder of how much Honda actually does. Plus that tagline at the end, really sold the ad campaign. Marvellous in every sense.

Grade: A

Brand: Canada Goose

Name: Out There

Agency: CAA Marketing, Los Angeles

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: As it turns out, Canada Goose is a artic weather luxury clothing brand, And here’s me in had something to do with vodka. But I digress. It reenacts real stories of people who had previously made life-risking endeavours to follow their adventure. The art direction is wonderful, good narrative and the scenes are spectacular. I wouldn’t say it was one of the strongest ads here but its not too shabby either.

Grade: B

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Brand: TV Tokyo Corporation

Name: World Table Tennis Championship S 2015

Agency: Dentsu Inc, Tokyo

Country: Japan

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: I like the minimalist look with the use of blue as the main colour. It’s striking but subtle, engaging and yet reserved too.

Grade: B+

Tate Britain – 500 years of stories from Mom! Look what I made on Vimeo.

Brand: Tate

Name: Selfie/Grief/Bed/War/Gay (500 years of stories)

Agency: Grey, London

Country: UK

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x5)

Verdict: THIS. This is how you make art engaging. Especially art from an age ago. Visuals are great, but there’s truly nothing like a good story. But it’s usually the grim and tragic stories that seem to stick in our pysche like a hot knife. Why? I think it’s because it taps into our core as human beings who think and feel and despite the struggle or story, I think most people (if not all) can relate to the story in some shape or form. That’s why these adverts that featured the back stories of certain artists are both revealing and riveting. Plus when you go and see the actual art itself, you appreciate it in a whole new way you perhaps would have never had before. Bravo Grey.

Grade: A

 

Digital Craft

Brand: Because Music

Name: Because Recollection

Agency: 84.PARIS, Paris

Country: France

Award: Grand Prix

Verdict: Aha now this is a cool concept. In celebrating their 10 year anniversary, record label Because Music created Because Recollection, a collection of many of their featured artists past and present album covers and made them interactive. Now when you choose to listen to a particular artist, you can play with the interactive artwork cover that will alter the way the music is played.

Grade: A-

Brand: Falter Newspaper

Name: Falter/Inferno

Agency: Jung von Matt, Hamburg

Country: Germany

Award: Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: Again, no surprise this advert won two awards.Yes I re-watched it again and I don’t care! It deserves to be re-watched.

Grade: A+

Brand: Google

Name: Chrome Music Lab

Agency: Google, New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: The most valuable company in the world (sorry Apple) create Music Lab. I rather like this idea and even though its been out for awhile, it still has a newness to it. Nice work on the educational angle and creating something that is web based so it doesn’t require downloading an app. It’s actually a good way to kill time, productively of course. Ahem, here’s the link so y’all can go onto and let loose.

Grade: B+


Brand: ING

Name: The Next Rembrandt

Agency: J. Walter Thomspon, Amsterdam

Country: Netherlands

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Watching this advert made me realised something. Something that is both equally exciting and terrifying. Technology doesn’t limit our horizons, its broadens to them to such an extent it’s no longer about asking ‘What if?’ but ‘How’. This is what this ad campaign from JWT Amsterdam demonstrates. The result is so lifelike in Rembrandt’s own image, I think the man himself would be stunned to say this least if he saw this if he were alive in 2016. Incredible!

Grade: A

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Brand: Braintree Payments

Name: Codeology

Agency: Braintree Payments, San Francisco

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: What happens when you bring code and gifs together? You can this baby. Braintree Payments have created an algorithm program that translates code into moving images, not unlike gifs during their early years. Try it out for yourself here. It’s pretty damn sweet!

Grade: A-

Brand: Google ATAP

Name: Help

Agency: The Mill, Los Angeles

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: ATAP is a skunkworks project that allows the in-house tech team at Google to realise an idea and create the final product within a 2 year period. And the requisite for create radical projects in the name of tech seems to be the ticket. There was a LOT going on in that video but it DID make me want to go find out what ATAP was all about.

Grade: B

 

Outdoor


Brand: DB Breweries New Zealand

Name: Brewtroleum

Agency: Colenso BBDO, Auckland

Country: New Zealand

Award: Grand Prix, Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: Because that’s what the world needs, more beer! Interesting concept but half the time you know what my question was? Is this real? Like it is a legit thing? Surely this is a parody…Plus I’m a little surprised this one the Grand Prix award in this category. *Shrugs*

Grade: B

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Brand: IKEA – Saudi Arabia

Name: Bed/Nightstand/Bookcase/Table/Lamp

Agency: Memac Ogilvy, Dubai

Country: Saudi Arabia

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x6)

Verdict: Ikea usually do cool and quirky stuff, just seems second-nature to them. So these ads by their Saudi counterpart is a lil’ weird but you get what’s going on. Separately they’re just components or singular items but when brought together it becomes something more. You can see the other ones here too. The nightstand, bed, lamp and bookshelf.

Grade: B+

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Brand: Airbnb

Name: Airbnb Animals Pig/Armadillo/Octopus/Spider/Penguin

Agency: TBWA\CHIAT\Day, New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x5)

Verdict: I think these ads are cute. No words are needed for this campaign, which is fine because in this instance it works better that way. These critters find themselves suitable accommodation and seem quite content with it. I couldn’t say the same if I was left with a dog kennel as an only viable option. I mean, where is the working toilet? Be sure to check out the Octopus and the Pig version too!

Grade: B+

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Brand: Jorge Castaneda

Name: Walls/Problems/People

Agency: Wing, New York

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x2)

Verdict: Great campaign with a very important message. You cannot point a finger at one group of people and expect carte blanche for yourself. It’s like the saying, point one finger and you’ll have three pointing back. I know the US have real concerns about immigration, I mean it’s an issue with a lot of people here. But Wing have done a great job at pointing out that Mexicans don’t throw judgement and false claims about the American people when they visit or move there, so why can’t they be treated the same? It’s a hot button topic and it opens up the discussion with a lil’ help from adland.

Grade: B+

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Brand: Dutch Mill Co.

Name: Man/Lady/Office

Agency: Monday, Bangkok

Country: Thailand

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x3)

Verdict: Hahahahahaha!! I love this so much! This is why the Internet exists (don’t tell me it exists because cat videos, no).  These print ads are awesome but I had to google what Dutch Mill Co. do exactly and apparently they’re a diary company. Quite a different way of doing an advert for a caffeine stimulated beverage, but it almost makes me wanna try the stuff. And I don’t drink the stuff either. There’s two more, a Lady version and an Office version too.

Grade: B+


Brand: Getty Images

Name: Angela/Charles/Frances

Agency: AlmapBBDO, Sao Paulo

Country: Brazil

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x4)

Verdict: Short and sweet. And it’s smart too. Piecing together various facial attributes from various faces all to make up one very familiar face. Clever, nicely done Getty. They work well as print ads too. You can see Charles, Angela, Francis & Dalai as separate print adverts.

Grade: A-

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Brand: Thai Health Promotion Foundation

Name: Portraits/Thinking/Smiling

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, Singapore

Country: Singapore

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x6)

Verdict: That advert is beyond terrifying. It also reminds me of whatshisface from Mars Attacks. That really does says it all really. Look after yourself. It’s your responsibility and your body will only look after you if you look after it. It’s so graphic that you know it’ll be burned into your retinas for quite a while. You can view the other two here and here.

Grade: A


Brand: Jaguar Land Rover New Zealand

Name: Actual Reality

Agency: Y&R NZ, Auckland

Country: New Zealand

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: HA! This is sheer brilliance! I love how they took the term ‘virtual reality’ and turned it on its damn head. I cannot spoil this advert, it’s worth every second watching. It’s stylish, funny and quite stimulating.

Grade: A-

Microsoft TombRaider Survival Billboard from McCann London on Vimeo.

Brand: Microsoft

Name: Survival Billboard

Agency: McCann, London

Country: UK

Award: Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: This is such an amazing campaign idea that I’m glad to see it won two Gold Lions. This is such a great concept, wonderful participation both online and offline and it had all the makings of a viral hit. Really impressed with this and it’s such an engaging campaign on so many different levels it’s hard not to actual tip your hat to McCann on this.

Grade: A


Brand: Art Institute of Chicago

Name: Van Gogh BnB

Agency: Leo Burnett, Chicago

Country: USA

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: See my verdict for above. Not surprised it picked up a second Gold Lion. It’s a wonderful interactive experience after all and did you see the queues at the Art Institute? Something’s clearly working.

Grade: A-


Brand: Intermarche

Name: Sugar Detox

Agency: Marcel, Paris

Country: France

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: No sound? In French? Not quite sure how else to judge this one. But the animation is nice?

Grade: C-

Brand: ING

Name: The Next Rembrandt

Agency: J. Walter Thomspon, Amsterdam

Country: Netherlands

Award: Gold Lion (x2)

Verdict: Same as above in the Design category section. Marvellous, just marvellous.

Grade: A


Brand: Ab Inveb

Name: The Fairest Night Of All

Agency: Del Campo Saatchi & Saatchi, Buenos Aires

Country: Argentina

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: I remember seeing this ad a few months ago so I needed a refreshed look at it. Still just as humourous and hunky as before. I love how Del Campo S&S took all the hot men and redirected them to a ad photoshoot/video sesh while all the other guys scored at the club. Fair is fair, at least it was for that one night. Wonderful idea for a beer advert and you know what, it’s no wonder some of the guys at the club struggled. I mean….damn.

Grade: A-


Brand: Prodiss

Name: Ma Place est dans La Salle

Agency: Fred & Farid, Paris

Country: France

Award: Gold Lion

Verdict: Not at all surprised ‘Ma Place est dans La Salle’ won another Gold Lion. This was a campaign that encompassed everything. Word of mouth, social media, video production, print, online and off and so on. The outdoor advertising done in relation to ‘Ma Place est dans La Salle’ is quite exceptional when you realise already existing posters were changed to incorporate the same message.

Grade: A+

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Brand: IKEA Austria

Name: Grill/Bed/Sofa

Agency: DDB Group Germany, Berlin

Country: Germany

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x3)

Verdict: This is mighty clever. Questions pop up into your head when considering purchasing an item or piece of furniture. And some of those questions are really important. Like ‘Does it match our living room?’ and ‘Who’s going to clean that mess?’. The poster features questions and statements with the relevant product right next to the thought-bubble. Nice. Very Ikea. You can see the bed version & grill version too.

Grade: B+

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Brand: Amnesty International

Name: Humilation/Torture/Isolation/Voicelessness

Agency: Olgivy Germany, Frankfurt

Country: Germany

Award: Gold Lion Campaign (x4)

Verdict: This ad campaign won four Gold Lions for its four individual posters. The colours are quite mute in a certain way that suggestions a sort of bleakness and gloom. Such are the things that Amnesty deal with. It’s is difficult business that requires tough-skin and equally a generous heart and fierce mentality. I think why this campaign seems to work is that there are no words needed. Sometimes those in trouble can’t speak for themselves. So all we have here are visuals. And ones that feature terrible situations and most notably, the barbed wire that is a feature in Amnesty’s logo.

Grade: B

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