Thai tearjerker has world reaching for hankies

A three-minute film for Thai mobile brand TrueMove in which a young boy caught stealing medicine for his sick mother is helped by a benevolent restaurant owner has become a worldwide hit

A three-minute film for Thai mobile brand TrueMove in which a young boy caught stealing medicine for his sick mother is helped by a benevolent restaurant owner has become a worldwide hit

In case you haven’t seen it yet, we won’t spoil the surprise – just watch it here

Incidentally, there don’t seem to be any credits available for the agency or director of the spot.

At the time of writing, the ad has had over 10 million views on YouTube. There have been stories about it in the Mirror, Mail and Guardian, plus many more worldwide. So why has it become such a hit?

It’s really well made with performances that sit just the right side of schmaltz. And it packs quite an emotional punch with many YouTube commenters admitting that it left them dewy-eyed. Plus the advertising message is decidedly (too?) subtle, confined to a line at the end about giving.

Playing the ‘tearjerker’ card is a very tricky thing to get right in advertising, particularly in the UK where viewers tend to have a highly sensitive gag reflex. The Giving spot is sentimental and manipulative but it has undeniably struck a deep emotional chord with viewers worldwide. Which leaves us wondering whether it would work in the UK?

British advertising has had its own snuffly moments. John Lewis’s Christmas ad, for example

 

And even now JR Hartley’s fruitless trudge around his local second-hand bookshops can induce a lip wobble

 

And there was this one too of course

 

More recently, Leo Burnett has been taking an emotional, not to say mawkish, route with McDonald’s

 

But when to comes to schlock, the Americans have it down

 

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