Given the impact and influence television commercials have on both popular culture and product sales, it’s no wonder that directors and writers put as much thought and care into those 60-second messages as they do feature films. The British in particular produce some wildly creative spots each year, and the best recent ones are part of the compilation film British Arrows. “This is one of our most popular annual screenings. And for those with short attention spans, it’s hard to beat this thoroughly enjoyable program,” says Ray Gomez of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston’s film and video department. Commercial spots run the gamut from Kevin Bacon reprising all of his big film roles for a movie club to the Three Pigs being arrested and tried for killing the Big Bad Wolf to the Durex condom commercial that somehow relates DJ turntables to the birth-control product. More serious commercials address domestic violence and differently abled athletes. Volkswagen cars and Guinness beer prove perennial favorites, though sensibly not in the same message. (Driving in England is hard enough for us Americans without having Guinness involved.)
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7 p.m. Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday. 1001 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-639-7515 or visit mfah.org. $9.
Sat., Dec. 7, 7 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 8, 5 p.m., 2013