Arts and Entertainment Part of history: Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker star in Lee Daniels's 'The Butler'

The film-makers take a tableau approach to storytelling, whisking us from one melodramatic set-piece to the next

Anthony Hopkins dreams on: Nominated again for an Oscar this week, for his butler in 'The Remains of the Day', he has the world at his feet. But it has been a long, strange climb. Elizabeth Kaye reports

He was not the first to discover in movies a refuge that otherwise eluded him. He was 15 when he first saw Charlie Chaplin's Limelight. He saw it 15 times, perceiving himself in Chaplin's loneliness and failure, and perceiving, in the Dresden perfection of Claire Bloom, an ideal and a mirage. I must become famous, he thought, so I can meet Claire Bloom.

Hollywood plaudits for 'Guildford Four' movie

THE film In the Name Of the Father, which has been attacked by British right-wing media for glorifying the IRA, was yesterday given a warm endorsement by Hollywood, which nominated it for no fewer than seven Oscars.

Thompson triumph

(First Edition)

BOOK REVIEW / A star is reborn - after getting the message in a bottle: 'Anthony Hopkins: In Darkness and Light' - Michael Feeney Callan: Sidgwick&Jackson, 15 pounds

JUST after Christmas 1975, the 38-year-old Anthony Hopkins woke up in a drunken stupor in an Arizona motel room with excrement on the floor and his career almost down the toilet. That moment was the final stage in the actor's 15-year descent into appalling alcoholism. He later claimed that he had heard a voice at that moment, saying to him: 'It is all over. You can start again.' Whether or not this was true, he abruptly returned home to Los Angeles, joined the local Alcoholics Anonymous group in Pacific Palisades and never touched another drink.

LEADERS OF THE PACK / Wearing the crown: Holly and the ivories: Screen Actor Of The Year

IT WAS the year of the supporting actor, starting with Jack Nicholson blowing Tom Cruise away in A Few Good Men. His portrait of the brutality that calls itself patriotism was so powerful it thwarted the film's liberalism. Watch on the video for the eyelash flutter when he feels the heat on the witness stand. Tommy Lee Jones also stole a star vehicle, The Fugitive, outshining Harrison Ford with his swagger and wisecracks. Even the turn that won the Oscar for Best Actor - Al Pacino's blind war vet in Scent of a Woman - felt like a brilliant cameo.

Obituary: Richard Jordan

MUCH mention was made in David Shipman's obituary of Richard Jordan (6 September) of Jordan's capable performances in films that were not particulary memorable (or were memorable, such as Raise the Titanic, for the wrong reasons) or of fine performances which were merely cameos, but what was probably his finest performance for the big screen was omitted, writes Steven Gibbons.

The myth of a 'twilight world' is not helping the murder hunt: Chris Woods, a gay writer, looks at the tension between police and those at risk

A SERIAL killer stalking London's gay population is a tabloid newspaper's dream come true.

Man who plotted career as serial killer is jailed: Victims fought off knife attacks by 'weedy' admirer of film villain Hannibal Lecter

A FORMER mental hospital patient who planned to become a notorious serial killer, was jailed for life yesterday for a day-long orgy of hammer and knife attacks last October.

Screen violence: the tide turns: The Hollywood dream factory is now a nightmare, say critics who accuse it of peddling horrific brutality. Cal McCrystal reports

Hollywood has always fed off itself. In recent years the feeding has been of a particularly graphic kind: Robert DeNiro biting off a woman's cheek in Cape Fear; Anthony Hopkins biting off his victims' faces in The Silence of the Lambs. Questions arise. Is Hollywood trying to turn us all into cannibals? Will 'Eat thy neighbour' become a tenet of our society?

Plastic fantasy or real life, take it or leave it: Debate, not regulation, should control screen violence, says Andrew Graham-Yooll

THE RENEWED debate about television violence makes good reading. It also warns broadcasters and programme makers that their audiences are reaching saturation point or, more likely, that politicians have climbed on to the morality bandwagon.

Keep violence off our screens, says Major

JOHN MAJOR opened a new phase in the debate on law and order yesterday by calling on film, video and television producers to protect children from the 'relentless diet of violence' on screens.

Conservatives in Harrogate: Tories find no praise for 'liberal do-gooders'

PARENTS, schools, poverty, unemployment, lack of morals, the Government, liberal do-gooders, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Baroness Thatcher, the devil - the number of MPs' reasons for crime were as large as the problem itself.

BOOK REVIEW / On the trail of dropped names: Tom Shone on a bold attempt by Phillip Kerr to merge the hunt for a serial murderer with a taste for philosophical puzzles. 'A Philosophical Investigation' - Phillip Kerr: Chatto & Windus, 14.99 pounds

EVER SINCE we came across Dr Lecter feigning sleep on his bunk, Alexandre Dumas' Grand Dictionnaire de Cuisine lying open on his chest, thriller writers have been falling over themselves to furnish their killers with the same finely-tuned aesthetic antennae as Thomas Harris's well-mannered monster in The Silence of the Lambs. The soundtrack to slaughter in Phillip Kerr's new thriller may be Schubert's Piano Trio in B flat and not the Goldberg Variations, Lecter's own favourite, but this detail is typical of the novels caught up in Harris's wake. A Philosophical Investigation is full, not so much of differences from Harris's novels as of ex-similarities - similarities that have been anxiously smudged, disguised, tweaked into differences.
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