Arts and Entertainment
 

The Israeli-born actress has previously starred in three Fast & Furious films

Armageddon in Retrospect, by Kurt Vonnegut

Parting shots from the haunted preacher of radical American populism

The problem with Ben Affleck

Why do so many people dislike Ben Affleck? Kaleem Aftab braves the disdain of others to meet the debutant director

The Flood by Maggie Gee

Swept away by a deluge of decadence

Good Scene / Bad Scene

Chosen by Michael Bay, director of 'Bad Boys 2'

Hundreds are feared murdered in pits at cult's site

Sceptical followers were killed by poison and suffocation in latrines after millennium Doomsday predictions failed

Arts: God has taste as well as humour

`Dogma' tries hard to be madcap but only succeeds in committing the ultimate in cinematic blasphemy - it's just plain dull. By Anthony Quinn: DOGMA KEVIN SMITH (15) n MYSTERY MEN KINKA USHER (PG) n THE MUSIC FREELANCERS DENIS DERCOURT (PG) n MUPPETS FROM SPACE TIM HILL (U)

Film: In the name of the mother

Kevin Smith's films always feature strong women and weak men. Dogma is no exception. What is he trying to say? By Charlotte O'Sullivan

The Joys of Modern Life 54. Fat men

THIS WEEK sees episode two of The Sopranos, that lengthy American drama about the New York Mafia. A cross between Goodfellas and a bad American soap, it does have one saving grace. The balding fat bloke, Tony Soprano, aka James Gandolfini, right, who struts around half-naked with his pasty, lardy stomach and double chin, is to me the definitive in sex appeal.

Film: Blasphemy, the movie

Kevin Smith's new film, Dogma, is so controversial that Disney want to bury it. Good lord, what's all the fuss about? By Roger Clarke

Film: Rushes

AS THE Idiots strikes bewilderment into British cinemas, news arrives that Lars Von Trier has this week begun his next project. It stars Catherine Deneuve and Bjork, and it's a musical. Honestly. It looks as if the Icelandic pop star will play Selma, whose only escape from her rural existence is a love for classic Hollywood musicals. Selma's a factory worker, but we're promised show-stopping production numbers with Deneuve too. If this sounds like uncharted territory, hang on a minute. Deneuve starred as a down-trodden shop-girl in the 1964 film The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. Bjork also proved herself as an effective hoofer in Spike Jonze's video for her version of "It's Oh So Quiet". It all sounds a riot, but a Von Trier film needs its dollop of Scandinavian gloom. Here, it's Selma's son who will fall victim to the same condition that's eating away at his mother's eyesight unless she can pay for an operation. The film's title? Dancer in the Dark.

Best-sellers: UK Films

THIS LAST WEEKS GROSS

Cinema: It's a laughing shame

The Idiots

Obituary: Bert Remsen

IN A gallery of supporting performances that ranged from tough members of the military through mild family men to a transvestite named Helen, perhaps best remembered will be Bert Remsen's portrayal of the genial and extrovert bank-robber T-Dub, always in a state of gleeful zest for life in Robert Altman's Thieves Like Us. Altman frequently used Remsen in his films and helped him re-establish an acting career after an accident on a television sound-stage in 1964 left him needing crutches or a walking stick for the rest of his life.

Critics Chioce: Film

Besieged (PG)

Real Living: Debate

Women are split: there are those who adore Gwyneth Paltrow and think she is beautiful, talented and fully deserves her Oscar nomination last week. And then there are others who see the star of 'Shakespeare In Love' as a sorry sign of just how bland Hollywood has become. Elizabeth Heathcote (a fan) and Anna Melville-James (a critic) fight it out
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Sir Bruce Forsyth with Tess Daly in the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special
tvLouis Smith wins with 'Jingle Bells' quickstep on Strictly Come Dancing's Christmas Special
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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)
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Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
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Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
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Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
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The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
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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
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there