Ads We Like: AT&T mashes up westerns and kids’ movies in latest cinema campaign

As the summer blockbuster scene heats up, AT&T is paying tribute to two of cinema’s most enduring genres — westerns and children’s movies — in the most humorous way possible.

The movie mashup is part of AT&T’s ‘More For Your Thing’ cinema campaign. The 90-second film, ‘Train,’ combines elements from westerns and family films to let viewers know they can get movies and more with AT&T unlimited plans.

The film tells the tale of a Wild West train heist in two distinct parts. The first shows a train heist. As a locomotive steams down the tracks, a grizzled band of train robbers is seen planting dynamite on the tracks. The conductor sees them and screams, “They’re blowing the tracks!” but can’t stop the train in time. The explosion breaks the rails as the train careens into a gully on its side. When the dust clears, the scene becomes a whimsical stop-motion animation of a train trying to right itself. Each car is a different, overly perky character. All the cars chant “We’ve gotta get back on the track,” as they dust themselves off and jump back on the track, choo-chooing along in song — and the now animated gang looks on in stunned silence.

The work, from BBDO, was directed by Dougal Wilson and supported by House Special (previously known as Laika/house), which handled the animation. The animation director on the project was Paul Harrod, who was the award-winning production designer on Wes Anderson’s Oscar-nominated Isle of Dogs.

‘Train’ will begin airing in theaters on May 24, in time for the Memorial Day holiday weekend, and will continue through the remainder of the year. As with earlier efforts for the campaign, this was made possible through the continuation of AT&T’s partnership with NCM and Hearts & Science, AT&T’s media agency.

Previous films from the campaign include ‘Surprise,’ a mashup of romance and horror genres; ‘Bus,’ which melded suspense with a musical; and ‘Shot,’ which brought together sports and science fiction.

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