Life and Style Wonder and frustration: the Leap Motion Controller in action

An idea that deserves a big hand – a pity it's not mine

Teenage sex: the great escape to a life less ordinary

The Americans have realised that young people often turn to sex as a substitute for real relationships. The same is true in Britain, yet we seem unable to learn the lesson.

Film Studies: Bald, blank, brainy. It can only be John Malkovich

Something strange even for the movie business has been evident in the last few weeks. I refer to a movie known as Being John Malkovich. A friend asked me what I thought of it, and I pass on the opinion I gave him - that for 45 minutes or so it is stunningly original, and so funny you can't stop laughing. "I'd settle for 25 minutes of that," said my friend, in a shrewd comment on modern pictures.

Football bosses halt fans' charter

PLANS to force soccer clubs to include fans on their boards have been dumped by the Government's task force following complaints from the football authorities.

The Irritations of Modern Life: 49. Film Trailers

WHEN I go to the cinema, I behave normally and acceptably up to a point. I queue up along with everyone else, I read the show times, I buy my ticket, and I wait in line again to pay a small ransom for an ice-cream.

Books: In search of a life less ordinary - and more risky

Would you like to take a holiday from yourself? Mary Allen enjoys a couple of chilling trips across the frontiers of personality

Satellite: Pick of the Day

WHAT BETTER way to spend a Bank Holiday Monday than in the company of Ewan McGregor (right). A evening of his work kicks off with the premiere of A Life Less Ordinary (10pm FilmFour), his third film with Danny Boyle, Andrew Macdonald and John Hodge. In this delicious black comedy wittily directed by Boyle, McGregor plays a disaffected cleaner who tries to boost his fortunes by kidnapping the boss's daughter (the delightful Cameron Diaz). At the same time, in a typically surreal touch, two angels (Holly Hunter and Delroy Lindo) are trying their damnedest to make the couple fall in love. This is followed by McGregor's two previous efforts with the same creative team, the murderously dark comedy, Shallow Grave (11.50pm) and the startlingly original drug drama, Trainspotting (1.40am), which features Robert Carlyle.

The Critics' Awards 1998: Film - The good, the bad, and the really, really bad

When habitual, recidivist, and even paid filmgoers come to look back on a year just past, there is a temptation to be solemn, whether or not the millennium is now like the iceberg waiting for Titanic. It's easy to pronounce that things are not as they were - above all, I fear, in the sparse range and quality of foreign-language films. It's possible to surmise that 10 or so years into the next century, there may be far more ice than navigable ships on the water. Nevertheless, I had a good time in 1998 - even if that paints me as blithely shacked up in a first- class stateroom as the ice loomed.

Advisers split on paying for aid

THE ROYAL Commission to advise how the increasing burden of care for the elderly should be financed is facing worrying divisions, according to sources.

Film: Film chart

London Top 10 Weekend box office No of screens Weeks open

Film: The Chart

UK BOX OFFICE

Cinema: It is awful, but we liked it

There's Something About Mary 15

Preview: Film - There's something about Mary (15)

Good taste is not something for which the Farrelly brothers, the sewer-minded siblings behind Dumb & Dumber and Kingpin, are renowned. And nor will they be after There's Something about Mary (above). Going where few films dare, it eschews political correctness in favour of cheap - and occasionally shocking - jokes about masturbation, mental illness, homosexuality, serial killers, black foster parents, voyeurism.... Few taboos are left intact, in fact, as Ben Stiller, Matt Dillon and Lee Evans compete for Cameron Diaz's impossibly sweet Mary. But the acting is so game, the tone so good-natured and affectionate, and the humour so all-embracing that the film never actually becomes offensive. If anything, it's a hilarious reminder of just how absurd we humans are.

Music: There's something about Jonathan

Jonathan Richman introduced us to the abominable snowman in the supermarket. Now, like wow, he's a film star.

Film: The Big Picture - Mary, Mary quite amenable

THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY (18) DIRECTORS: PETER AND BOBBY FARRELLY 119 MINS STARRING CAMERON DIAZ, MATT DILLON AND BEN STILLER
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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
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Panto dames: before and after

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Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

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Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

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The man who hunts giants

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The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

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The male exhibits strange behaviour

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From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

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Marian Keyes

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Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

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