When we think of airlines’ instruction guidelines or safety videos, we are usually presented with the image of a poised airhostess acting out the rules or an animated video explaining the procedures. But how about going to a new continent and learning life-saving guidelines with the help of children, animals, scientists and an amazing cast? Air New Zealand went out of their way, literally, to make their new safety video adorable and educational.
The video opens with Adrian Grenier, an actor popularly known for his role in Entourage, landing in Antarctica to interact with the scientists there and explore the continent. We also see a group of children being shown around a museum and communicating with Grenier via video recordings. The educational aspect of the video is wide as it gives information on topics ranging from weather to topography, from animals living there to the work being done by scientists and from the instruments used in ice to the importance of the continent as a whole. But the best part is the fact that even while covering these array of issues, they manage to smoothly slide in the safety guidelines and parameters.
The video is no doubt “cool”, thanks to the lovely views of snow covered mountains and landscapes. But it is cute in the way it has been executed. The background music is an upbeat track called Somewhere Only We Know by Keane. The inclusion of children and Grenier’s effective narration skills adds to the already cheerful atmosphere. One might think it is a tad bit long but seeing how no important safety rule has been left out, it is worth it. Even small safety rules like ‘No Smoking’ have been communicated by kids’ pointing out how it is not allowed to smoke on airplanes.
However, despite all this, the video has drawn criticism and backlash for insensitivity issues. The video showcases Antarctica which pinches some people due to ignorance of the 1979 Mount Erebus air accident. In 1979, 257 people succumbed to death when an Air New Zealand flight crashed into Mount Erebus. The anger is from the side of families who feel their feelings and the tragic past of the airlines has not been given due consideration.
Air New Zealand is famous for creating innovative videos and they have worked well for them in the past. This attempt, though commendable, still needs to chart out its course. Here’s hoping to see more memorable stuff from Air New Zealand.