I've always been a firm believer that our words are very powerful. Not that they can be, but that they, in fact, are. Whether intention sways the outcome of their hearing to the right or the left, whether they are declarative, imperative, or subjective - our words are powerful. They inspire, evoke, declare, confess, and otherwise define. No matter the purpose, I simply think our words are an extremely volatile force and they should be chosen with some deal of reverence.
Early in 2013, I spent 2 months in Portland, OR, installing security cameras on naval ships while spending my off-time trying to make connections in the city's various ad agencies. During my two months there, I came to discover the surprisingly large cinema and indie-film scene that existed. And one particular night, I heard a new film had just come to the Living Room Theater and it was a true story of an advertising campaign that changed the political fate of Chile, entitled No.
Right out of the gate, this film had 3 things going for it that got me stoked to see it:
- A film about Advertising ("Oh cool. Wonder if it's like Art & Copy?")
- It's a true story ("Hmm. Wonder if it's some epic campaign that I liked as a kid?")
- Gael Garcia Bernan ("Generally rad dude.")
As movies go, I loved it! It was so very interesting, well written, and the cinematography was something to behold in and of itself. As storyline goes, I was completely oblivious to this incredible historical event: An advertising campaign to oust the current dictatorial power in Chile to usher in a new era of democratic process.
If you haven't seen this film, I highly recommend you do. Enjoy it for its many entertaining features, but may it also give you a newfound respect for the words you hear, think, and say. On a very personal level, I think the ad industry has the potential to be the most prolific one in the world. While on any typical Monday, Mad Ave will simply "sell widgets" and maybe crowd out a person's mind with broadcast noise. But every now and then, when executed correctly, it is the loudspeaker of motivation that can change lives for the better. Ogilvy allegedly provided money to the needy. Droga created an outlet to give water to the thirsty. Maybe it's a "David" thing? Either way my mind is blown by the power their words had to help or even save others. I hope with all my heart that my efforts and campaigns will one day be as equally successful beyond a dollar sign.
*www.jetpacksforthehomeless.com is still a "for sale" domain, Nick Sammons!