Commercial Break: Keep walking... and walking... and walking

8 August 2009

Back when this writer was a young boy, it seemed that every summer holiday would take us to the Scottish Highlands and that at least twice during every holiday, we would visit a distillery, to see close up how whisky is made.

It was the most boring thing imaginable to a nine year-old, especially as I didn’t even get to sip at the complimentary glass of the good stuff that they give you at the end of the guided tour.

Now, I’m in my thirties, and visiting a distillery in Scotland is probably in my top five list of things I’d love to do. It’s crept into the top five after watching this lengthy ad that stars Robert Carlyle. He recounts the story of another young boy, Johnnie Walker, who grew up to launch what became the world’s biggest whisky brand.

What’s most amazing though, is the ad itself. Lasting in excess of five minutes, it’s filmed in one single shot, with Carlyle on the move throughout but hitting his prop marks every single time. It’s a stunning piece of film making.

It’s 3.20pm as I’m writing this. Too early for a wee dram? Nah…

10 comments

  • Alan
    Fabulous film making.
  • Charles
    Its a pity, they are about to do a lot of damage to his town of Kilmarnock.
  • Alistair
    Seeing this invokes mixed feelings - what a fantastic bit of filming and work by Mr Carlyle. However the greedy bastards at Diageo now want to end the connection between JW & Kilmarnock. I walked past the factory earlier this morning and it's a right state it doesn't look to me like they've done any maintenance on the plant for some time. I'm sure they'll use the state of the buildings as part of an excuse to move to a shiny new factory ending a 200+ year connection with the town. Not to mention the livelihoods of the 700 or so people who work there. Some who can trace family employment back more than 100 years. I understand the need for companies to evolve but with the profits this company make it's bloody ridiculous especially given how much they used to punt their history with the town. Personally I think the town is a bit of a dump and only visit when I really have to but this is down to loads of other large businesses having moved on over the years and if, more like when, Diageo lock the gates the future for Kilmarnock certainly isn't looking too clever.
  • Jeezey
    Kilmarnock look like its been 'damaged' by an atom bomb anyway
  • sgandtg
    Perhaps Mr JP Chandler will move his Buckfast bottling facility into the building vacated by Mr Walker? Would save them a fortune in delivering the finished product as 80%+ of it is sold in within walking distance (almost).
  • fu m.
    boring. redubbed. just well rehearsed on timing. in fact probably had a guide vocal playing during filming to get the timing right.
  • LD
    Johnnie Walker factory closure could damage the brand Drinks giant Diageo could face consumer backlash after its decision to cut ties with Kilmarnock bottling plant http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/consumer_goods/article6689359.ece Locals express fears over the prospects for Kilmarnock if the Johnnie Walker plant closes with hundreds of jobs lost to the town. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8172217.stm Finance Secretary John Swinney says Diageo must recognise the impact of the proposed Johnnie Walker plant closure. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8172203.stm
  • Angry S.
    Your faith in Mr Carlyle's abilities is touching, if perhaps a little over optimistic. I con only presume you've never heard of a recent invention called "the autocue"?
  • andy y.
    For piece of brand puffery it's good.Certainly it avoids painting the walker family as saints rather as shrewd businessmen.You have to ask would the Wlaker have put local economic interest or profit first? I suspect just like Diageo they would. That's capitalism,cruel ,unfair and efficient
  • Johnny F.
    How i laughed at this... Andy Dawson calling himself a writer... HAW HAW!

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