There’s something arrestingly tragic about the attribution of human behaviour to wild cats captured in this CGI ‘Obesity is the real killer’ ad from the Middle East.
At first you might think it’s a bit of a larf – whole new meaning to ‘big cats’, and all that.
But obesity is increasingly a serious public health problem in countries such as Saudi Arabia, particularly since the introduction of popular western foods like burgers.
And now the leading food and beverage conglomerate in the Middle East, Almarai, has put out this visually surprising pre-Ramadan ad.
Do you think it’s effective, or just gimmicky? Called المراعي- البدانة وحش قاتل (Obesity is a Killer), it’s part of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) campaign for Almarai, whose brands distribute dairy and other products including cupcakes, baby food and frozen chicken.
Some of us might recognise our own domestic felines in that desperate flumping – and resolve to do better by them.
Where does Audrey come into it?
Ah yes, well, purely on the computer-generated imagery (CGI) side. Which is, of course, not ‘pure’ but potentially very confusing.
Remember the ‘Roman Holiday’-style ad in 2014 featuring a beautiful young woman many of us thought was an actress who looked remarkably like the pencil-slim Audrey Hepburn? Not everyone realized that Dove Chocolate’s 60-second mini-movie was in fact the result of a year of painstaking CGI, working from shots of the actress when she was alive.
Last year Samsung gave us the CGI ostrich ad to show off one of its products – anyone remember which, or were you too busy enjoying the sight of a flightless bird taking off?
But while both Dove Chocolate’s Audrey and Samsung’s Ostrich brought beautiful or inspiring imagery to life, even for those who had never seen the originals, Almarai’s obese cheetah is powerfully tragic under its titter value.
By showing the distortion of natural power and beauty in a wild creature that does not deal in greed, the ad puts across a sinister, vivid image.
It takes technology to illustrate reality. Apparently.
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