Chain / Guinness (1994)

The Guinness ‘Chain’ advert which – to the average person – is probably better known as the one with Louis Armstrong singing ‘We Have All The Time In The World‘.

The actual advert itself is rather cleaver; a product of pre-CGI model making and special effects, the camera tracks through the glass and into the pint, revealing a hidden universe inside of a slowly sinking bubble. Stars slip into view, each surrounded by planets and waves of interstellar gas. We move inwards, slipping through the atmosphere until an under-construction Tower of Babel emerges from the clouds. The camera pushes onwards, homing in on an upper floor littered with detritus and, eventually, the same pint of Guinness that we originally entered. The advert then pauses, before pushing onwards, through another cycle of the infinite pint-universe-planet-tower-pint sequence.

Pint Glass
Our Universe of bubbles.
Stars, dust, and planets.
Out of the cloudscape a Tower emerges
The Tower dwarfs the continent behind it.
We move closer to the Tower, the construction machinery becoming ever-more visible. By this point, it’s quite clear that our Tower is based on Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s et of three pictures titled The Tower of Babel.
We continue to zoom in, passing parts of the Tower still under construction, until…
…we reach a hidden corner of one of the upper floors…
…filled with the detritus of the mid to late 20th Century…
…and our pint of Guinness. The religious and philosophical implications of Guinness being present at the construction of the Tower of Babel are, mercifully, skipped over.
The strap-line.