Poets have traditionally written to tempt coy mistresses into bed, and Marvell duly turns up inside the covers of The Poetry of Sex (Viking £14.99). Published in time for Valentine’s Day, this anthology features a huge “X” on its cover. Is there such a thing as raunchy poetry? Does the editor Sophie Hannah want us to admire the enjambment or heat- up so much that, like Dante’s Paolo and Francesca, we tremblingly push the book aside and “read no more that day”?
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Thursday 08 November 2012
Sam Mendes’ Bond film Skyfall has become the biggest film at the UK box office this year, surpassing The Dark Knight Rises accruing £57 million in 12 days.
Friday 26 October 2012
Nothing like a disaster at sea to put people off booking a cruise. The deadly accident in January that befell those on board the Costa Concordia off the coast of Italy steered potential cruise goers to safer shores for months. Last month, the cruise operator Carnival reported stronger-than-expected quarterly results which showed signs that punters were regaining their sea legs. Yesterday, US rival Royal Caribbean raised its full-year forecast.
Saturday 13 October 2012
Who knew that George Lazenby quit James Bond after just the one film because he didn't believe the character could survive late-Sixties hippie culture? "Bond is a brute, and I will never play him again," he grandly announced soon after On Her Majesty's Secret Service was released in 1969. "Peace – that's the message now."
Thursday 04 October 2012
Director Sam Mendes has promised James Bond fans an "epic" film when Skyfall hits cinema screens this month.
Monday 01 October 2012
It is not that the release of Skyfall is unworthy of fanfare, particularly given that it coincides with the 50th anniversary of James Bond's first ever outing (in Dr No). BSkyB's decision to launch an entire channel dedicated to the exploits of 007 and his Walther PPK is, however, rather missing the point.
Magnus Betner, Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh
Des Bishop, Assembly George Square, Edinburgh
Max and Ivan, Pleasance Courtyard, Edinburgh
Comedian Dies in the Middle of a Joke, Pleasance Dome, Edinburgh
Sunday 26 August 2012
If comedy is the new rock 'n' roll, then Magnus Betner may be its Lou Reed: deadpan, downbeat and determinedly difficult. The Swede tells us he is a "fucking superstar" in his home country, though it's hard to tally that with the jaded figure who explains he couldn't be bothered to give his show a name. "People would go to something because of the title? How stupid is that?" he seethes. Duly, his set is austerely gimmick-free. A vitriolic jeremiad sees him weighing in on numerous "horrible, tragic" news stories – his preferred kind – with provocative one-liners and skewed sermonising. Given the ground covered, it's inevitably a mixed bag – his rundown of the Aids "hierarchy" was as trenchant as his analysis of the Batman shootings was glib. But, in an hour that inspires as many awkward silences as laughs, his uncompromising commitment to serious humour is a perversely admirable thing.
Sunday 12 August 2012
Jeremy Renner's version of Matt Damon's hero has plenty of wham-bam but little complexity
Wednesday 08 August 2012
It's becoming something of a Sky speciality. Spend a bit of cash to hoick something from the terrestrial channels and then give it its own specialist channel so devotees can dedicate 24 hours a day, or thereabouts, to watching their favourite thing. It did it for sports, then it did it for Formula 1 and now it's doing it for the Bond films. It struck a deal in April with MGM, the film studio behind the spy franchise, to take the films away from ITV (who previously held the exclusive rights, which is why you were rarely more than a few hours away from Thunderball on ITV4). And from the autumn, Bond will be getting his martinis poured without ads on a temporary dedicated channel on Sky, launching on 5 October, which will also get the TV premiere of the forthcoming Skyfall.
Monday 30 July 2012
Friday 13 July 2012
Ben Whishaw will play Q in the next Bond film, Skyfall, in the youngest interpretation yet of 007's gadget man.
Friday 15 June 2012
'We’ll certainly be more careful with what is said in future,' says developer.
Thursday 24 May 2012
Pinewood Shepperton tumbled to a loss after a year that saw the film studios taken over, but it still has James Bond for company.
Saturday 28 April 2012
David Fincher delivers an atmospheric but slightly unnecessary (after the 2009 Swedish version) adaptation of Stieg Larsson's thriller.
Saturday 21 April 2012
1. The Perfect Storm
Sunday 15 April 2012
'Vices: drink, but not to excess, and women ...'
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- 1 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 4 Now diplomacy has failed, boycotting Israel might be the only way we can protect the people of Gaza
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire