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12 December 2019

They call me the seeker.

by Andrew MacGregor


Nike: “Qiang Diao” - 2 mins 17s

Director Finn Keenan's new gung-ho commercial for Nike introduces Western viewers to the concept of qiang diao, or "confidence, swagger, or flair" in Mandarin. Everybody wants some; not least a certain nouveau riche tool in a pool.

From the comfort of his electric water-throne, the Shanghai big shot instructs one of his lackeys to find qiang diao and bring it back post-haste. Cue a madcap dash into China's biggest city and a sweaty journey of self-discovery.

Sure enough, as the attendant pleads with gymnasts, basketballers, skateboarders et al for help, he finds that - in the parlance of Thierry Henry - va-va-voom comes from within, not a catalogue. Good news for him, bad news for his deluded boss.

It's also good news for the audience, as the film chucks all manner of sporting flourishes and OTT sound effects their way. The elongated victory yell from the newly qiang diao'd protagonist is an especially fab touch.


Film Production: Riff Raff Films Ⓟ Ⓦ
Director: Finn Keenan Ⓟ Ⓦ
Producer: François Larpin
Production M'ger: Kate Brady
Executive Producer: Natalie Arnett
1st AD: Ben Glickman
Cinematographer: Arnau Valls Colomer
Art Department: Marco Puig
Editor: Jono Griffith Ⓦ @ Work Ⓟ Ⓦ

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