Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Design Studies: Czech Dream

I was first shown Vít Klusák and Filip Remunda - two final year film students in the Czech Republic - by Kirsty, a Jewellery student, who was introduced to it through Jonathan. Klusák and Remunda created "Ceský Sen", thats "Czech Dream" to you and me, for their final project. You can watch it here on BlinkBox.

Their main interests, aside from the obvious being film, lay with how advertising can be used to propagate against the masses. Together they decided to create their own brand, and begin their very own marketing ad campaign, promising the Czech people lower cost shopping at a new hypermarket; Ceský Sen. They produced labelling. Adverts for the sides of public transport. Billboards. Radio jingles. A brand that people could begin to relate to, and recognise.

This was all very well, but there was something unusual about this hypermarket. It didn't exist. It was a complete ploy in terms of marketing. They wanted to discredit advertising, or at the very least, make the local people think about what it is exactly that they take in every day without even consciously realising. They wanted to expose that advertising does not equal truth.

Unsurprisingly, when they themselves were ultimately exposed during the finale "opening day" of their hoax hypermarket - they found themselves at the centre of a hate rally. The local people were furious, and felt that they had been made a fool of; humiliated for nothing. And, what irritated them furthermore was that it was all at the cost of the tax payer - as Klusák and Remunda had received government funding for their project.

However, when the general mass of people partially calmed down, it became apparent that they were in fact more upset, than angry - as they suddenly understood what the point of the stunt was. It boiled down to the then recent (as it was released in 2005) public vote on joining the EU. The Czech Government had paid out an unbelievable sum in advertising, propagating the people into believing it was the right thing for them - when really it benefitted the government scores more than the people, which is what Klusák and Remunda had issues with. Ceský Sen highlights this through a marketing stunt, which luckily for the creators also served as their final project. The film itself also has some comic moments besides the more serious underlying topic, including showing how difficult it can be working in an industry such as marketing. For the BBC's review - click here.

Well worth a watch!


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