DVD Review: Depeche Mode – “Videos 86 > 98+”

Depeche Mode’s Videos 86 > 98+ is a reissue of the Videos 86 > 98 DVD, except this version has two discs instead of just one. The first disc is basically a slightly re-worked version of the original DVD. The main menu, while it is nothing terribly fancy, is still an improvement over the menu on the original issue of the disc. This menu has the logo from the cover as the background image, and you are given four choices: Play, Video Selection, Interview with Depeche Mode, and Short Film.


The Video Selection menu has the electronic Depeche Mode logo in what kind of resembles a spaceship hangar. The video selection is broken up into three groups of videos to choose from; the groups contain seven videos each. The other options on the menu take you directly to what is labeled on them. If you use the Video Selection menu, the disc will play the video you choose, and then continue playing the remaining videos in sequence.

If you choose the Play option, it will take you to the beginning of the whole disc; the disc opens with a montage of items associated with Depeche Mode’s videos, such as the lawn chair from “Enjoy the Silence.” This is followed by a short interview section that includes interviews with Dave Gahan, Martin Gore, Andrew Fletcher, and Anton Corbijn. The interviews tell stories behind shooting the videos for “Personal Jesus,” “Enjoy the Silence,” “Barrel of a Gun,” and “It’s No Good.” This section also includes footage from some of the videos (“A Question of Time,” “Useless,” “Personal Jesus,” “Enjoy the Silence,” “Barrel of a Gun,” and “It’s No Good”), as well as footage from a video shoot. Then, disc one progresses into the music videos; each video opens with a title card with one of the images from the opening montage, as well as the title of the video. Two of the videos on the two discs have exclusive audio: “Enjoy the Silence” and “But Not Tonight.”

The disc ends with a twenty minute short film titled, Depeche Mode – A Short Film. The film includes interviews with Dave Gahan, Martin Gore, Andrew Fletcher, former member Alan Wilder, Daniel Miller (head of Mute Records), Anton Corbijn, Flood, Tim Simenon, plus someone else who has worked with the band; unfortunately, nowhere during the film did the individuals’ names ever appear on the screen to identify them, hence why I was unable to identify the final individual on the list.

The film also includes footage from some of the videos: “Stripped,” “A Question of Time,” “Personal Jesus,” “Enjoy the Silence,” “I Feel You,” “In Your Room,” “Barrel of a Gun,” and “It’s No Good.” Footage also appears from the 101 video release, newspaper articles about Dave’s overdose, newspaper articles about the band’s “return,” and footage of Dave singing “Only When I Lose Myself” in the studio.

The second disc opens with a menu that has a close-up of one of the digital signs from the cover. There are three options in the menu: The Videos, 3 Short Films, and Play All.

The menu for the videos has an orange curtain with a digital sign with a number “0” in the middle. The video selections appear on either side of the sign; “But Not Tonight” and “Strangelove ’88” appear on the left side, and “One Caress” and “Condemnation [Paris Mix]” appear on the right side.

The menu for 3 Short Films is a long shot of the orange curtain (a projection room can be seen on the top of the screen), with digital signs in front of the curtain. However, the signs are blurred, so you can’t read what they say. The three choices appear at the bottom of the screen. When you watch the three promotional films, they are left in their original form; this means that the music videos included in the original are not edited out. And unlike the first disc, if you choose a video or a short film, the disc will only play what you select.

When you select Play All, it goes into the “But Not Tonight” video, and this is followed by the “Strangelove ’88” video. Next is the promotional film for the Violator album, which includes interviews with Dave Gahan and Martin Gore, outtakes from the “Personal Jesus” and “Enjoy the Silence” video shoots, as well as the videos for “Personal Jesus” and “Enjoy the Silence.” Overall, this promotional film was enjoyable to watch.

Next on the disc is the promotional film for the Songs of Faith and Devotion album. This includes interviews with all four band members (Dave, Martin, Andrew, and Alan), footage from the “Just Can’t Get Enough” video, footage of the band hanging out in Madrid while recording the album, and ends with the video for “I Feel You.” Overall, this promo film is the worst of the three; many of the things that happen in it are very obviously staged, such as the woman coming up to Martin’s room. Also, it felt like too much emphasis was being put on Martin in the film. This is followed by the videos for “One Caress” and “Condemnation [Paris Mix].”

The disc closes with the promotional film for the Ultra album; it includes interviews with Dave, Martin, and Andy, some sound samples from the album (with accompanying lyrics on the screen), and the video for “Barrel of a Gun.” This film, while it is better than the one for Songs of Faith and Devotion, is still rather strange in how it was done.

Overall, this is a decent collection. However, the videos for “Pimpf,” “Clean,” and “Halo” are missing; perhaps in the future, a double DVD set of the Strange and Strange Too video compilations could be released to make up for this deficiency. Outside of that, though, this item is a great addition to a Depeche Mode collection in order to upgrade from the original video or DVD issue of this item.

I wrote this review after watching a copy of this DVD release that my husband and I purchased.

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