Mark Asch’s review published on Letterboxd :
"Is this film more interesting than a documentary of the same actors working out?" I would, actually, prefer to watch Frederick Wiseman's GUY PEARCE'S HOME GYM, but that's not really fair because I didn't know that before now. Few films have taken exercise so seriously as a window to the soul; we're talking like a Renoir-level attentiveness and openness to everyone's (equally) silly exertion faces and workout regimens, which are more than routines, they're *rituals*.
So it's quite a tender attitude that the film takes to its very legible central thesis: that exercise is a symptom of the same Stockholm Syndrome that's also seen us internalize linked beliefs about entrepreneurship, virtue, self-actualization, "goal-oriented" behavior—a cult of cuddly Ayn Randian positive thinking, which Kevin Corrigan's immense and arbitrary wealth renders absurd (as in real life).
Two quotes from Mark Greif's "Against Exercise," in the very first issue of n+1:
"Modern exercise makes you acknowledge the machine operating inside yourself. Nothing can make you believe we harbor nostalgia for factory work but a modern gym."
"The person who does not exercise, in our current conception, is a slow suicide. He fails to take responsibility for his life. He doesn’t labor strenuously to forestall his death. Therefore we begin to think he causes it."