Cheerful Man “Robert” Sets Out To Learn A New Language. The Reason Will Make You Cry

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Setting a commercial around a holiday can be tricky. If not handled correctly, it can become sappy very quickly. Then it might be relegated to being aired on one of those channels that show equally sappy movies. Generally, companies don’t want to be pigeonholed into a certain corner. This commercial that we see in this video is one of the best I’ve seen in a long time.

It starts with an older man, staring out the window of his house while it rains outside. He sighs and then sits down at his laptop. He types in something and then clicks his mouse and nods in satisfaction to his dog, who’s sitting next to him on his bed. He’s made a decision. Shortly, a package is delivered in the mail. He opens it up and we see that it’s a language class on how to learn English. The man puts on a spot of tea and sits down to begin. He’s got work to do.

What follows is a wonderful montage of him putting sticky notes on everything with their correct English word – even the dog, who quickly bats it off his face. He’s constantly practicing speaking wherever he goes while wearing his wireless headphones. He also watches English television… which apparently includes a scene from a gangster film, where he repeats that line while in the tub, curse word and all. Then he orders another package. This time it contains a suitcase and a travel kit. He bids his roommate goodbye as she holds his dog. An airplane trip and London taxi ride follow. Finally, he gets out and goes to a house where a man, presumably his son greets him. Then, as he stands in the door, his son and daughter-in-law turn and they see a tiny face peeking out – here’s another great moment since the child is biracial. He goes up to her, bends down and says slowly, in English, ”Hello, I am your grandfather.” Scene.

One of the reasons that I loved it is because it feels so real. The actor playing the grandfather did a great job as someone who was not afraid to merge new technology with old. He’s clearly used to computers and he’s not even fazed by wireless headphones. There’s never a sense that anything is being sold to you or a holiday message being crammed down your throat. Well done. I had a lump in my throat at the end. No wonder the video is viral.

I needed a tissue by the end. How about you? Were you moved? Leave a comment below!

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