Kaiser “Breath”

The nice thing about a commercial for a healthcare provider in Hawaii is that it can show picturesque locals in their picturesque locale. This spot for Kaiser Permanente Hawaii (via Campbell-Ewald, Los Angeles) takes full advantage of that circumstance. It opens with a boy breathing deeply as a doctor listens with a stethoscope; it closes with an old man undergoing the same examination. In between are glimpses of dancers in traditional garb rehearsing on a verdant hillside, an outrigger canoe being paddled quickly through the water, a kid chasing a school bus out in the Hawaiian boondocks, a children’s chorus rehearsing, and so on. It’s all quite pleasant to look at. What makes the spot interesting as well as pleasant — and what ties it to the healthcare brand being advertised here — is that the soundtrack consists almost entirely of people breathing deeply. These sounds are weaved together to create a strongly rhythmic, almost-percussive whole, and it somehow has the effect of making the succession of visuals more potent than a pastiche of postcard scenes. That’s partly because it’s a good setup for the voiceover tag: “Our doctors share every breath you take.” The spot will probably make you want to move to Hawaii. Would it also make you want to get your healthcare from Kaiser? That’s harder to say. It’ll certainly hold viewers’ attention. And if nothing else, most of the people in the spot look so robustly healthy that a viewer is apt to come away associating that trait with Kaiser. –Mark Dolliver