A highly graphic ad which throws the idyllic notion of wagging school on its head has already amassed more than 1.5 million viewers in three days.
With the idea taken from a banned Mentos commercial, the 1.45 minute advert was created for WA’s foundation Learn for Life by short filmmakers Henry Inglis and Aaron McCann and produced by Lauren Elliott.
In an attempt to encourage kids to stay in school otherwise they would die Inglis told B&T Cam Newton from Learn for Life asked him and McCann to create something for his organisation.
“He encouraged us to really push the envelope on this one, and it’s really Cam that had the courage to put his brand behind something so risky,” Inglis said.
“The aim was to make people laugh, and to make fun of some advertising clich√©s.
“It also parodies overdramatic PSA’s that make authoritarian over-the-top statements. ‘This is what happens when you slack off’ is a ridiculous statement that isn’t intended to be taken seriously.”
Climbing out of the window and jumping in a Kombi van to meet two guys (boyfriends presumably), two school girls shed their uniforms for beach ware as they drive along, hues of oranges, browns and greens depicting a glorious summer day.
Down to the beach they arrive, ducking under a fence with surfboards tucked under their arms.
A slow motion run into the churning ocean, splashing around while the sun beams down on them, this foursome hydrate themselves, whip their hair around and two even sneak in a cheeky kiss.
After kissing her boyfriend one of the girls teasingly runs away from him, glancing back over her shoulder before – BOOM – her blood and mush is splattered against her boyfriend.
A further two BOOMS sees the two blokes blown up, their gore spraying the camera and the lonesome girl who is left screaming and bloody amongst the sand and sea.
A quick shot back to the fence the group had ducked under and the audience sees a warning sign “Restricted area – no trespassing beyond this point. Explosives testing site”.
With a final message of “This is what happens when you slack off”.
“Stay in school.”
Inglis told news.com.au the work was "about contradicting standard advertisements – it's a bit of a f— you to advertising in general."
"It's playing on those idealised commercials of people breaking free from their confines. We complete reverse that," he said.
“Set Yourself Free” is written and directed by Henry Inglis and Aaron McCann and produced by Lauren Elliott.