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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Stomp Out Loud
Stomp Out Loud
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Review by Aaron Beierle | posted February 3, 2001 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:

Originally broadcast as an HBO special in 1997, "Stomp Out Loud" presents the Stomp players as they try to make music out of bashing, tapping and throwing found objects to often create an absolutely marvelous rhythm. That's really not all there is to it, although that's certainly quite a bit on it's own. The troop also certainly are talented dancers, as is shown in the movement that's required in nearly every scene.

This 50 minute performance from the group remains as remarkably entertaining on DVD as it did when I originally saw it a few years ago, although the expanded audio in Dolby Digital 5.1 provides an experience that's even more exciting. HBO has also offered the DVD at a nice price - $19.99 retail and less at most stores. After some lengthy delays in getting the program out on DVD, it's good to finally have it - I think most will be amazed at the kind of sound that the group gets from everyday objects. Current fans will also be pleased to bring the "Stomp" experience home.


The DVD

VIDEO: HBO presents "Stomp Out Loud" in the original full-frame presentation of it's broadcast and the results are more than pleasing, although not without a few little distractions. Sharpness and detail are often very good, although there were a couple of moments where a slight bit of softness creeped in. Although I didn't see any instances of pixelation, a couple of appearances of slight shimmering creeped in - nothing distracting, though. Colors are often vibrant and bold as the group travels throughout the streets of New York and on the stage making their brand of music.

SOUND: HBO has included both a Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby 2.0 audio presentation for "Stomp Out Loud" and the 5.1 presentation is particularly entertaining, as the sounds of "stomp" explode from all around the viewer. Although there are times on stage where the surrounds offer crowd-noise, they are also often used to good effect to open up the presentation and bring the sounds into the room, as it practically feels as if the show is going on all around you. Audio quality is good too; when larger objects are used there's a definite strong thump, not just a little "tap" - the sound is full and lively, not flat.

MENUS:: Menus are not animated, but the "Stomp" graphics are nicely used as backgrounds.

EXTRAS: Although HBO irritatingly lists "Interactive Menus", and "Audio Selections" as "Special Features", there's some actual additional content located on the DVD, although it does involve a bit of reading. There's several text/image sections - "general information/timeline", "cast/crew", "filmography", "making of", "photo gallery" and "awards".

Final Thoughts:

Positive: The show is wonderful - it's a very entertaining mixture of dance and music that's at least worth a look as a rental if you've never seen "Stomp" before, and worth looking into if you have. Audio/video quality is good, as well.

Negative: A commentary by the dancers or an actual documentary would have been interesting.

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