Cannes Lion awards

Creative bravery at FFWD Advertising & Marketing Week

February 3, 2015 | Opinion | by Amanda

The Cannes Lions Screening at #FFWD2015 Advertising & Marketing Week

Audiences generally don’t flock to movie theatres specifically to see advertisements. Last week’s screening of Cannes Lions 2014 winners at #FFWD2015 proved that with the right skills, two hours of ads can actually be an enjoyable experience. The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity sifts through over 30,000 entries to award the best of the best in advertising across the globe and the end result is a highly engaging reel. The common denominators? Strong narrative and creative bravery. We’ve all
seen a car commercial where a sleek automobile climbs a mountain road—but how often do you see one that substitutes a well-oiled machine with an imperfect human?

Citroën – Daddy

As the screening progressed, it was enlightening to see viewer reactions that would normally be confined to the space of a laptop. Ads solely comprised of great visuals without some form of narrative, humour or emotion attached tended to pass by reaction-free. I even noticed that I had trouble remembering what company was advertising when the ad relied solely on aesthetics. I’m a big advocate for humour (when possible), because if it’s done right, it elicits a genuine response. You can’t fake being entertained. It’s not shocking that in a group setting, the comedic ads were audience darlings.

Marmite – End Marmite Neglect

Du Telecom – Too Complicated

On the other side of the emotional scale, there were a number of serious campaigns that were incredibly effective and lingered on in my thoughts long after they ended. Here the line between ad and documentary becomes blurred and the potential for change is inspiring.

Water is Life – 4 year Old’s Bucket List

Topsy – Pills

Overall, this year’s Cannes Lions screening underscored the growing trend of varying ad lengths and novel approaches. It’s an exciting time for production to be sure, but as media saturation continues to increase, so does the need for creative bravery.

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