April 13, 2010

Some Seventies Nostalgia and One Fine Ad


Came across a couple of classics this week as I was sifting through videos and couldn't get them out of my head, so I thought I'd pass them along. Not to dwell too much on the past, I also included an ad created by Klipmart for the Amp'd mobile phones. Check 'em out.

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Clip Pic #1. Best of The Electric Company

Great news, early Gen X-ers: The Sesame Workshop (formerly the Children's Television Workshop) is offering a DVD that collects 20 Electric Company episodes. And the website includes not only a trailer for the DVD but also 14 individual video clips, including "City Cat," "I am cute very," "It's the Plumber" and "Letterman."

Anyone who grew up in that era (early 70s) will immediately feel at home with the dull oranges and greens of the home page and dissolve with laughter as they watch old favorites like Easy Reader and Jennifer of the Jungle.

Anyone who didn't grow up then will still get a kick out of watching great actors like Rita Moreno, Morgan Freeman and Bill Cosby strut their unbelievably funky stuff across the screen (a screen, by the way, made to look like one of those old TVs -- you know, like with dials) as they begin their careers.

Advertisers and content providers are continuing to explore the relatively new medium of online video for the "next great thing," and consumers are continuing to create their own terrific videos -- and I always look forward to seeing what they come up with. Still, I find that one of the most enjoyable aspects of online video is the opportunity to reacquaint myself with classic moments from the past.

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Clip Pic #2. Klipmart ad for Amp'd Mobile

Klipmart, a provider of online video advertising, has produced a video ad for the Amp'd line of video-enabled mobile phones that uses a big variety of video in one small ad format.

The ad looks pretty standard when it begins playing: different models of a mobile phone zip into the foreground and out again, after which the ad becomes static and viewers can click to find out more.

Or, they can click on the top nav bar for Amp'd Live. This immediately opens a six-panel screen that shows a different video clip in each of the panels. One panel, for example, showcases a snowboarder happily zooming down a half pipe, set to music. Another is of a woman dancing at a bar as though doing her own private pole-dance before she loses her balance and bites the dust. The third shows sports scenes, while the fourth and fifth play portions of a music video and a video game.

The sixth panel, however, is the best. It's the first to load (certainly not coincidentally) and shows a young, blonde woman wearing a bright red bra. Click, and you'll find a clip from "Naked News," which shows a trio of young women cheerily announcing the news while disrobing.

The ad originally ran in May, on (not surprisingly) the Maxim magazine website, among others.


Clip Pic #3. "Shining"

Did you ever wish Stanley Kubrick's The Shining had a cheerier story line? Probably not. Nevertheless, one enterprising individual last year pulled together a mash-up of scenes from the original movie and created a trailer for a feel-good (yes, feel-good) movie called Shining.

The voice-over:

"Meet Jack Torrance. He's a writer looking for inspiration. Meet Danny. He's a kid looking for a dad. Jack just can't finish his book. But now, sometimes, what we need the most is just around the corner."

The voice-over is interspersed with lines and scenes from the original movie, all calculated to tell a story about a father/writer who is out of ideas, a son who has nobody to play with, and a mother who (as in the original movie) doesn't seem to do much.

So far, it looks pretty familiar. But soon, Danny is slowly approaching a door, pushing it open, and tentatively entering a room as though entering a whole new world where happy families live (in the original, of course, Danny is about to meet a really bad, really dead woman in that room).

The family begins to behave as happy families do. Jack and the wife begin enjoying each other's company and kissing passionately (again, fans of the original know that it's actually the dead woman from the bathtub Jack is kissing).

The music, Peter Gabriel's Solsbury Hill, is beyond perfect, giving the trailer such a chick-flick feel that, I admit, I'd probably want to go see the movie if it was for real. The product description on iFilms reads, "Coming this fall, Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall star in a heartwarming story about a family's journey of self-discovery."

It's a classic viral video, so 12 friends may already have forwarded it to you. Still, it's a terrific example of what consumers are doing with media today. I look forward to the time when advertisers get equally as creative.

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