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January 2013 ad for Leica B&W flagship camera the M Monochrom


photomeme

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This was discussed on another RF forum back in January. I would compliment the DP and the editor -- if it weren't so terribly mis-conceived. It's a misappropriation of the Capa story, with many references to his life and even to specific photos that he made, and misrepresents him as a Leica user at key times when he was in fact a Contax and Rollei user. It's no surprise that Leica did not approve this.

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Perhaps it should have been in colour... ;)

 

More seriously, I think ads which appear to romanticise war are never a good idea. There's nothing romantic about the horrors of war and the countless personal tragedies which stem from them.

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It's make pretend. No cameras were harmed in the making of this film.

 

As for Capa, this was doubtless storyboarded by a spotty marketeer who thinks Capas are found on bottleas. He probably (mis-)heard the story once and thinks it both apocryphal and fair game. The facts of the matter do not matter to him any more than they do to 98% of his target demographic. He did not expect his little movie to incur the wrath of a knowledgable Leica afficionado any more than the makers of Titanic expect anyone to bother about an anachronistic twist of dialogue.

 

In this "story" I can see echoes of Burrows, Page, McCullin - even Hemingway. It's a "dramatization" (sic), not meant to be scryed over or nit-picked.

 

This thread belongs in the Bar.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

 

Sent from another Galaxy

Edited by bill
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This is one of the most inappropriate, insensitive and unintelligent pieces of marketing that I have ever seen.

Unfortunately we now live in a world where any type of human experience, no matter how traumatic, can be trivialized and distorted in the pursuit of commerce.

Shame on those who are responsible for this crass piece of advertising.

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It is really over the top for my taste, but it was fun…

 

They are tapping into the idea of a camera being an animate object (on this forum nothing new there!) that reincarnates, simultaneously connecting the dots of history from Leica'a past (III) to its future (M-M).

 

However the subject of war is a dangerous one for Leica's PR imagery, as it also can conjure up images of those Wehrmacht gray paint Leica's from a different war.

 

If I were Leica, that is what I would be more concerned about regarding this PR film.

 

But we can't say Leica is not trying to be innovative with their PR, can we?

Theo

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To be fair, this isn't an official bit of Leica marketing, and I am sure they would be more sensitive. I think we can honestly say this came from The Boys from Brazil :rolleyes:

 

Regards,

 

Bill

 

Sent from another Galaxy

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Perhaps it should have been in colour... ;)

 

More seriously, I think ads which appear to romanticise war are never a good idea. There's nothing romantic about the horrors of war and the countless personal tragedies which stem from them.

 

But war is 'romantic' and glamorous. The harsh reality of it for those directly involved is something else.

 

However, this ad is rather tasteless and very pretentious which offends me. Superbly filmed though, seems such a wasted effort.

 

Perhaps they could re-dub it and sell it to Zeiss instead?

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As bill already pointed out:

 

Mrleicacamera 1 month ago

Hello there, this video has not been approved by Leica. We are also unsure about any legal issue regarding the estate of any photographer concerned. Please take it down.

^JJ with Leica

 

Edited by banshy
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This is one of the most inappropriate, insensitive and unintelligent pieces of marketing that I have ever seen.

 

So you prefer the official roll-out photographs of Mongolian sex workers in flagrante delicto?

 

I'm not impressed with the Leica branded account complaint copied here.

 

Saatchi in Brazil is not going to get near a production that violates copyrights or trademarks. It's not clear that Leica contractually restricts its distributors from this kind of promotion. If Leica considered this an IP violation, they could file a takedown notice under the U.S. Digital Millenium Copyright Act, and YouTube would immediately comply. It's been up almost 60 days, and Leica has not.

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I find the video bland, cheap, trashy and romantistic (is that even a word in english?). I noticed two grammatical errors in the german voiceover, at least one of them fairly obvious - and embarrassing. So I don't think Leica had a hand in the production of this video - even though they are reputed to have weak moments when it comes to quality control:rolleyes:

 

Did I mention clichéé?

Edited by dunkelblau
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Guest WPalank

Loved the add. Saw the early release but subtitles were in Portuguese and voice-over was as is. Glad to see the English translation, finally.

 

But then again I think Hemingway (Papa) was the best writer of the 20th Century......

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Taking it too seriously? The creators of the ad went to a great deal of effort to make something convincing.

 

There is a reference at 0:11 to being "the camera of one of the greatest photographers in history". That's not a reference to Hemingway.

 

The sky full of parachutes at 0:17 is similar to this photo by Capa:

http://theredlist.fr/media/database/photography/history/reportage-de-guerre/robert-capa/002-robert-capa-theredlist.jpg

 

The dead soldier at 0:52 is similar to this photo by Capa:

http://www.leegallery.com/images/stories/photographers/robert-capa/robert-capa-death-on-a-leipzig-balcony.jpg

 

The decision to stop photographing war, mentioned at 0:54, followed by a return to it, parallels Capa's.

 

The scene of "following the French convoy" at 1:10 is similar to Capa's last photo:

robert capa's final frame | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

 

The death by landmine at 1:21 was in fact how Capa died, while following a French convoy. That's not a reference to Burrows or McCullin.

 

So that's not a dramatization of anyone's life but his. It might all be sort of relevant if it weren't based on the big fib that he was a Leica photographer in those dramatic scenes.

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