So, here it is – part 2 of the Chanel No. 5 ad campaign featuring Brad Pitt. And it sucks. Seriously. One can’t even make a spoof of these ads as they are a spoof upon themselves to begin with.
If this is a journey, it’s one of the most pointless and confusing ones that I have ever encountered. The 30-second clip begins with random vignettes that range from a pretty blonde running on water to a dark-haired woman looking at a nighttime cityscape (anyone else thinks this looks way too similar to Blake Lively’s Gucci shot?), haphazardly stitched together for no apparent reason. Then, halfway through, things turn black-and-white and a scruffy-looking Brad Pitt starts intoning directly to the camera. Wearing a creased shirt and shaggy hair, hands stuffed deep into his pockets, he delivers a monologue about… well, I haven’t managed to figure what it’s actually about, to be honest.
As The Guardian puts it most succinctly: “However much Brad Pitt was paid to become the new face of Chanel No 5, it almost certainly wasn’t enough. Sure, it might have seemed like easy money at the time – all he had to do was stand in an inconsistently lit room for 30 seconds and spout a load of unscannable nonsense that sounds like it’d been Google translated through 12 different languages and back into English again – but it’s bound to come back and kick him in the bum.”
Why, why, why, why would Brad Pitt and Chanel do this unto themselves? On one hand, we have Monsieur Pitt who has been so successful in shaking off his reputation as superfluous eye candy in recent years. But then he comes here, trying to inject hammy profundity (cue hushed delivery, awed look… think of a cliche and it’s here) into drivel such as, “The world turns and we turn with it”… all that good work, undone in one swift stroke. Sigh!
Then there is the iconic Chanel No. 5 – the creation of Gabrielle Chanel, who was one of the world’s first modern women and a savvy feminist to boot. That’s why she wanted to create “a woman’s perfume with a woman’s scent”. Beyond the non-existent script and overall lack of intelligence, it’s almost offensive that such a legendary fragrance from such an important woman actually needs to be fronted by a man. Because, after all, women wear perfume simply to please men. Right?
To sum up, if this 30-second clip was a movie, it would be a box office disaster. Hardly appropriate for the world’s bestselling perfume.
Tell me: what do you think of Pitt’s latest ad campaign? Is it sensual or senseless?