Arts and Entertainment David Lynch, Untitled (England). Late 1980s, early 1990s

A recurring motif in his films, Lynch first started photographing abandonned factories in the early 1980s

Film: Strange. The man seems so normal

In his new film there's no weird stuff - no dead homecoming queens, no filicide. And he's even taken to wearing a tie. Has David Lynch gone soft?

Film: That was me there, fighting John Wayne

David Thomson meets Richard Farnsworth, who started out with Howard Hawks and is now the star of David Lynch's `The Straight Story'

Pop: God Is In The Details

The Independent's guide to pop's fiddly bits

Nervous Hollywood shuns Cannes Festival

BRITISH film stars and art-house directors from around the world gathered in Cannes yesterday to take advantage of the gap left by Hollywood studios who have shunned the film festival this year.

Saying it with flowers

SHOPPING WITH...

Taking a walk on the wild side ... in Seattle

The 'wholesome' city has become the murder-mystery capital of the United States. By Andrew Gumbel

Film: Mulberries and the meaning of life

THE BIG PICTURE: A Taste of Cherry Abbas Kiarostami (PG)

The face is familiar...

Will Patton. The blond hood in Desperately Seeking Susan; leather- clad sadist in After Hours; his talents were wasted as bearded bad guy in The Postman.

friday's tickets

Throw open the windows, turn on the lights, get a dozen, well- adjusted friends to join you on the sofa. Then - and only then - should you consider watching David Lynch's latest weird-fest, Lost Highway. The lives of two seemingly unconnected men (Bill Pullman and Balthazar Getty), are shadowed by a camcorder-wielding, gun-toting dwarf and a lethal femme fatale (Patricia Arquette). A supporting cast of psychotic gangsters and sublimely ineffectual policemen complete David Lynch's return to form.

Moments that made the year: Fine romance proves that big isn't necessarily beautiful

The best films can take you back to the first time you were ever held in the spell of the cinema screen, with the smell of popcorn hanging in your nostrils, and the sound of the projector whispering in the distance. There were a handful of pictures this year that made me remember how intoxicating cinema can be. My favourite film of 1997 was Baz Lurhmann's Romeo & Juliet, which proved to be less a case of the film-maker adapting the text than lunging at it with a broad sword. Rather than simply updating the play, Luhrmann dragged the setting into modern times while audaciously keeping the language firmly plugged into the late 16th century. The results were sensual, witty and bold, with moments that made Fellini look like a master of understatement.

Media: Good Ad Bad Ad-GGT Wrigley's

In which a leading advertising expert picks some of the best and worst around. This week Dave Buonoguidi, joint creative director, St Luke's, on television commercials high and low

Comedy: Fringe benefits in the capital

When the League of Gentlemen bound on stage with cheesy grins and dinner jackets, the Footlights alarm bells start to ring in your head. But this is just the first of many occasions when the Perrier Award-winning sketch trio of Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith play with your expectations. Things are never as they seem in the twisted world of the League of Gentlemen.

CRITIC'S CHOICE: Films

1. The Full Monty
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?