The Russian Levi’s advert

Last Updated: 28 Jan 2021
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The Russian Levi's advert is about a man who arrives at a Russian airport and needs to get to his apartment in hope that his pair of Levi Jeans will not be confiscated. The advert was set during the time of the Russian Revolution, where Russia's rival country was America. The Levi's jeans represent Rebellion and Freedom, which was American Ideology, something that Russia was totally against. Russia was a communist country so the people had to follow one leader, and any one who did not obey the Russian rules or customs would have simply been shot or arrested. There is evidence to back this up as the advert starts off with a close up shot of a large poster of Lenin, a Russian leader.

The customs officer begins to search the traveller's luggage and finds a James dean magazine. James Dean is also American so the customs man instantly is shocked and turns to his colleague to ask weather the magazine should be permitted into the country. Just as he turns to his colleague, a large group of Russian militaries march by. The customs man immediately stops searching the luggage and salutes to the leader of the troop and quickly dismisses the traveller.

The traveller who is now desperate to get to his apartment rushes to a bleak, deserted looking train station and takes the next train home. When he arrives outside his apartment he scurries up the flights of stairs and opens his door and closes it behind him with a big sigh of relief on his face. He throws his suitcase on the bed and opens it up, rummaging around until he unfolds a parcel to reveal a pair of Levi's Jeans. The look of relief on the mans face when he sees his jeans is very important as it tells the audience that this man loves his jeans so much and they are almost one of the best pieces of clothing he owns, which then encourages the viewers even more to go out and by themselves a pair of Levi's jeans.

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This advert was set in Russia in around the time of the Russian revolution. We can deduce this as the advert features a picture of Lenin who was a very famous Russian leader at that time. The advert is also set in black and white, which tells us it was made in a very early period and also helps set the atmosphere of gloom and oppression. We can also deduce the time it was set in by referring to the magazine with James Dean on the front cover.

There is also a great contrast in costume in both adverts. The Russian advert has a heavy presence of Russian Military uniform, which gives the impression of communist rule. The main character in this advert was a young male who represents Russian youth. Although throughout the advert he seemed scared, he represents rebellion as he brings an American Item into his own country. He was dressed in formal clothing, which matched with the atmosphere of the society. He seemed weak and repressed by the Russian authorities and by looking at his posture and facial expression we could easily imagine his anxiety.

Prokofiev was a Russian composer who wrote military style music during the time of the Russian revolution and inspired the soundtrack for the advert. The music is deliberately construed with ponderous militaristic overtones to give us the impression of fear and danger. Even without seeing the advert itself this piece of music gives us a very clear picture of the setting and atmosphere. There are many types of camera shot used in this advert, Most of the close up shots were used to show the viewers of the advert the expression on the characters faces, e.g.: close-up shot on Man's face to show anxiety and fear and close-up on Customs Man to show suspicion.

There is also a close-up shot on Lenin's face at the beginning of the advert to ensure the audience are sure of the time and era of the advert setting. Most of the shots are long or medium to show the locations properly and the directions in which the man is walking in but there is a close up of items such as the James Dean magazine to allow the viewers to recognise the minor details such as the picture of James himself. At the end of the advert there is a close-up of the man's hands unwrapping the mysterious package to reveal a pair of blue Levi's jeans. The camera focuses on the red label and then a slogan appears in Russian saying 'There's Blue Jeans And then there's Levi's.'

Although the Russian and the Laundrette adverts are very different to each other the endings are very similar, as the viewers do not know what the advert is marketing until the end when there is a close-up of a Levi's red tag. Also another similarity is that both adverts keep the viewers drawn by creating captivating story lines which ensures viewers will watch the whole advert to see what happens at the of the story.

The advert was marketed towards youth who wanted to be rebellious and non-conformist, it was clear from the fear of the man in the advert that he was risking persecution in order to make a personal statement. The people who would buy these jeans would share the same beliefs and ideology of the man in the advert; they would stand up for their rights and believe in freedom and equality. I think the man in advert was brave and courageous and made people think if they too wore these jeans they would be different and individual to everyone else as they would express their opinion of repression through wearing the Jeans.

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The Russian Levi’s advert. (2018, Mar 29). Retrieved from

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