"Moz the Monster" is directed by Michel Gondry, an Oscar winner for "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," as well as veteran of commercials for Levi's and Apple. The French director brings his magical, quirky touch to the narrative, created by Adam&Eve/DDB and set to a cover version of The Beatles' "Golden Slumbers," recorded by British band Elbow.
The story concerns Joe, a little boy who first hears the snoring, farting monster under his bed and crossly puts a sign up on his door saying "No Monsters Allowed." However, he comes to be friends with the seven-foot creature, playing with him every night--although when his father looks in through the door, all he can see is Joe alone in his bed. But the nighttime fun takes its toll when he starts falling asleep in class and even during a soccer game. On Christmas morning, he finds a badly-wrapped gift under the tree--could it be from the monster? It's a night light, which has the miraculous effect of making the monster disappear and letting him get some sleep--although he can still get his friend back in a second by switching the nightlight off.
With its focus on an adorable child and his (maybe imaginary) friend, the ad is perhaps most reminiscent of John Lewis's 2014 campaign, Monty's Christmas, which won the Effectiveness Grand Prix at Cannes in 2016 and contributed to 132 million pounds on sales growth for the retailer. John Lewis will be hoping for a similar effect this year in a tough U.K. trading environment impacted by Brexit fears.
Gondry, who directed via Partizan, comments on the ad in a statement: "When I told my ex-girlfriend I was doing the next John Lewis Christmas film she said: You have big shoes to fill, this John Lewis commercial must make people cry, don't forget. Last week I showed it to her and she cried. Phew."