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The Workout
Pump It Up, brought to us from the well renowned Ministry of Sound, is the ultimate summer workout video to get us all in shape after all those months of unhealthy eating. But overweight people steer clear of this workout; unless you want to suffer a premature coronary that is! I tried some of these exercises and it nearly killed me, and I go to the gym a few times a week too. Suffice to say, this is no easy exercise regime. This is tough, balls to the wall hardcore stuff that only reasonably fit people will be able to do.

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One thing that did amuse me about this workout video was the people in front of the camera. They are just not real people, or even believable. These are people who will probably never need to exercise in their life, and they are able to flex into positions I didn’t even realise were possible to achieve for those us that are not invertebrates. Yes it's cliché, but at least its aesthetically pleasing.

The workout is broken down into sections that are easy enough to navigate between and the beach locale as the central backdrop is quite inspiring. It kind of creates a sense that the summer really is here. But at the end of the day this workout has plenty of babes, a variety of catchy dance music and, perhaps the biggest bonus of all, there’s no Jeri Halliwell in sight!

Video
Presented in widescreen, and obviously shot on location unlike many productions set against the blue/green screen, Pump It Up has a very refreshing feel to it from an imagery perspective. The quality of this image does vary somewhat however. There are certain angles that appear less polished as some of the head-on shots, which probably make up for most of the runtime. The overall image is mostly dirt free, but it is the constant inconsistency of image quality that can get a little annoying over time.

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Audio
It is something of a let down that this DVD only sports a Dolby Digital 2.0 track instead of a fully fledged 5.1 score, especially considering the thunderous nature of the dance music included during the workout. Still, the stereo track does its job reasonably well and both the dialogue and music are balanced nicely. Elsewhere everything sounds pretty good, and there is a good deal of substance to match the style here.

Extras
From the main menu you can head right into the action via the ‘play workout’ tab, or, if you want to head to a particular workout, hit the ‘skip to routine’ tab for easy access to those sections of the video. Also on the main menu is an ‘extra stuff’ sub-screen with a ten minute ‘making of’ documentary and a pretty useless mobile ring-tone feature inside. The documentary is pretty generic and lacks any real scope, but then again this is only a dance workout right? Even so, I am sure there were more areas of production they could have covered and it would have been nice to go in a little deeper. Also on the disc are five dance music videos which act as some much needed filler material.

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Overall
I haven’t actually sat and watched a great many workout videos in my time, but as far can gather this is probably one of the better ones out there. Sure, it is not entirely believable with its plastic looking models and high octane dance music, but then again these are clichés that have become embedded so deeply that the likelihood of something a little more ‘real’ coming along seems somewhat unlikely. Still, Pump It Up makes for a decent workout, if you are physically able that is. I would certainly give it my thumbs up. The audio/visual aspects of the disc are reasonably good too, but the features are lacking. This maybe just a workout video that doesn’t need bucket loads of stuff, but I would have liked to have seen a little more content to, forgive the pun, plump it up a little.


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