Arts and Entertainment

Without question, the book that has most influenced my life has been Naked Lunch by William S Burroughs. I was astonished by the outrageous pot-head humour: crazy ideas taken way beyond their normal limits. The book was a savage indictment of American racism and consumerism, it dealt with the corruption, graft and lies of politicians with Swiftian humour. I had never read anything like, then or since.

DVD & Blu Ray: Magic Mike (15)

Matthew McConaughey, after his louche turn in Killer Joe, once again excels as an ageing, preening stripper in Steven Soderbergh's lightweight drama.

It's a fair cop as Hollywood does good guys a shot

End of Watch's authenticity puts it on a par with The Wire, says Kaleem Aftab
Good cop, good cop: Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena play two LAPD officers, who try to do the best job they can under trying conditions

It's a fair cop as Hollywood gives good guys a shot

End of Watch's gritty authenticity puts it on a par with The Wire

'Whatever you do, just don't call me an England legend'

A century of caps, captain for club and country, but Steven Gerrard remains his own harshest critic, writes Sam Wallace

Monday book review: San Miguel, By TC Boyle

Captain Waters sinks the last $10,000 of his wife Marantha's income into a sheep farming concession on San Miguel, a tiny, uninhabited island off the Californian coast north of Los Angeles. On New Year's Day 1888, the steamer drops them on the beach along with Edith, Marantha's beautifully unruly adopted daughter. The escalating horror of both women at the punitive adversity of their new lives quickly sparks conflict with Waters's dogged idealism – bracing the first half of Boyle's absorbing narrative with a claustrophobic tension. Decades later, Herbie Lester takes up the tenancy with his not-so-young bride. They find their laughter and optimism not always easy to sustain under frontier conditions.

Suraj Sharma stars opposite a CGI tiger in Ang Lee's new film 'Life of Pi'

Heads Up: Life of Pi

Crouching tiger, Booker-winner, festive hit film?

Bean downplays Bank QE move

Charlie Bean, the deputy governor of the Bank of England and key interest rate setter, has poured cold water on the chances of an imminent expansion of the £375bn quantitative easing programme.

In Glorious Technicolor, By Francine Stock

With such a voluminous library on the history of film, is there scope for anything new? Francine Stock, who presents The Film Programme on Radio 4, has made a brave attempt in this knowledgeable book that sets a century of movies in historical context and explores their influence in an unfusty, readable way. Tackling this ambitious task, she utilises a decade-by-decade approach including a detailed exploration of 30 "films that exert a particular power".

Love after death: Victor Frankenstein (Charlie Tahan) and reanimated dog in Tim Burton's affectionate horror homage 'Frankenweenie'

Frankenweenie (PG) ***
Ginger and Rosa (12A) ***

Tim Burton's career, which seemed in tailspin with the Gothic resurrection comedy Dark Shadows earlier this year, has somehow righted itself with Frankenweenie, his most enjoyable film in ages. This too is a Gothic resurrection comedy, a monochrome stop-motion animation that revisits and extends a live-action short he made for Disney in 1984. On one level it pays affectionate homage to horror classics such as Bride of Frankenstein – Burton is an obsessive pasticheur – though more importantly it shows that he still has an instinct for a good yarn.

Tom Hanks to make Broadway debut in Lucky Guy

Hollywood actor Tom Hanks will make his debut on Broadway playing a tabloid journalist in the play Lucky Guy.

Page 3 Profile: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Former actor

So why is the Governator back in the news?

Who knew that Roseanne Barr was brought up half as a Mormon, half as a Jew?

Who knew that Roseanne Barr was brought up half as a Mormon, half as a Jew? Who knew, indeed, that since she is the Peace and Freedom Party's candidate for the White House, there are in fact one and a half Mormons running for president this year?

Lord and Lady Grantham the love story: Julian Fellowes plans Downton spin-off

Downton Abbey writer Julian Fellowes is planning to pen a prequel to hit ITV period drama Downton Abbey centred on a younger Lord Robert and Lady Cora Grantham.

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (12) Lasse Hallstrom DVD/Blu-ray (106mins)

Paul Torday’s satirical novel is more affecting and less upbeat, but Simon Beaufoy’s adaptation is single-handedly redeemed by an endearing Emily Blunt as Harriet, a well-heeled consultant who persuades Ewan McGregor’s uptight scientist in a sheikh’s loopy scheme to introduce salmon into the desert of Yemen.

Furbys passed for interactive in the days of Cool Britannia

Toys: The nineties brand going for a re-furby-shment

Remember the Furby, that squawking, animatronic toy of 1998? The one that looked like an Ewok, tweeted at its multi-coloured brethren (in the old-fashioned way) and caused thousands of children to keen at Christmas because their parents couldn't get one at Toys R Us?

Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll as Agnes Brown in the 2014 Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas special
tvCould Mrs Brown's Boys have taken lead for second year?
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
News
news
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all