Saturday, 27 April 2013

Desire is brilliant, but what about the F-Type?

ANYONE remember that Peugeot 406 advert from absolutely ages ago?

You'll know the one I mean. A girl in the path of an oncoming lorry gets saved from certain death, M People's soultastic hit Search for the Hero gets belted out in the background, and there's lots of money shots of France's favourite repmobile to establish it's - to reuse Peugeot's wonderfully awful slogan - the drive of your life. Even though it hasn't been aired in an ad break since about 1996, it's up there with Bob Hoskins telling us it's good to talk and three frogs belching out the name of a light beer for sticking around in the old grey matter.

As for car adverts, there's only two others I can actually recall out of the thousands I must have seen over the years - the VW Golf ad responsible for getting my favourite song to number one in the charts (The Bluebells' Young At Heart, if you're intetested), and Vauxhall's efforts to make the 1997 Astra the star of a sort of automotive Apocalypse Now. That's it.

Jaguar, however, has now decided to take the art of car adverts to a whole new level; for the new F-Type a minute-and-a-bit of Britpop and a clever catchphrase wasn't enough. So they sent Ridley Scott, Damian Lewis and their new sports car to the Atacama Desert in Chile not to make an advert, but a movie instead.
Desire, the 13 minute short film they came up with, is surprisingy watchable even if you aren't a petrolhead - think Quantum of Solace crossed with trippy Seventies car chase hit Vanishing Point and you won't be too far off. Without wanting to ruin the plot, Damian Lewis plays a suave, Bond-esque delivery driver who has to deliver a new F-Type, but finds himself having to fight off would-be assasins and the searing desert heat.

The only problem is that, for all the Gladiator guru's best efforts, you're always aware at the back of your mind that Desire is an extended car advert, and that poor Damian always plays second to the car itself. There's one scene where he crams the cars Top Trumps specs into a conversation he's having with a gun-toting gangster - something I can't imagine 007 or Jason Bourne doing any time soon. I applaud Jaguar for pushing the boundaries with what's possible, but I can't help feel it might have been better off getting Ridley and Damian to do a sequel to Bladerunner instead.

Desire is, in its own right, a brilliant bit of automotive artwork, but it doesn't answer the biggest question everybody has about the F-Type. What's it like to drive?

No comments:

Post a Comment