Arts and Entertainment Undercover operations: Brit Marling, Pamela Roylance, Ellen Page and Alexander Skarsgard in 'The East'

A high time with the eco-terrorists

Year One (12A)

Primitive gags fail to scrub up

Adrian Edmondson: Is that a joke in bad taste? You'd better watch out...

With controls in place I wouldn't have been able to do my silly press-ups

Kimya Dawson, Union Chapel, London

Even the Juno effect can't help

Smart People (15)

Some smart lines, at any rate, and fine performances from Dennis Quaid, as a crotchety widowed professor (borrowing a gut and a rolling, flat-footed walk from brother Randy), Ellen Page as his precocious, preppy daughter, and Thomas Haden Church as his freeloading slob of a brother, who turns out to be surprisingly dependable.

Noises Off: casting director Nina Gold on English roles going to foreigners

So what if the Canadian actress Ellen Page has been cast as Jane Eyre? No one fussed about Australian Cate Blanchett playing Queen Elizabeth

Mouth to Mouth (15)

Before Ellen Page hit the bigtime with Juno she starred in this slightly mangy drama about a teenager trying to find herself on the hippie trail in Europe.

Album: Madonna, Hard Candy (Warner Brothers)

Hard Candy: we're supposed to read the title as a self-congratulatory pun on Madonna herself, a sweet soft centre in a crisp hardbody shell; but there's another, more telling pun here, reflecting how a once diverse talent has ossified into simply satisfying the sweet tooth of functional dance-pop.

Album: Adam Green, Sixes & Sevens (Rough Trade)

With The Moldy Peaches' music featuring in the film Juno, Adam Green's stock has never been higher – which may account for his easygoing tone on this fifth solo album.

Sarah Churchwell: Abortion is sometimes the happiest ending

Apparently, we can't imagine a sympathetic character in a film terminating a pregnancy

Juno, (12A)

The young Canadian actress Ellen Page, proving her turn in the stalker satire Hard Candy (2006) was no fluke, plays high-school teen Juno, whose sassy backchat and self-confidence take a major knock when she discovers that she's pregnant.

Jennifer Garner: 'I feel like I kind of have it all'

Family, friends, a role in an Oscar-nominated film – it's all coming up roses for Jennifer Garner.

How interesting: 'QI' is surprise Christmas hit

Not all the critics were convinced when Stephen Fry began hosting QI, a kind of posh and severely eccentric pub quiz on BBC2.

Theatre: Real men get shot

In January this year I wrote that The Colour of Justice ought to transfer from the Tricycle Theatre in north London to one of the main stages at the Royal National Theatre. And - a mere eight months later - it's good to report that it has. The Colour of Justice is a dramatic reconstruction of one of the major political events of recent years - the Macpherson Inquiry into the death of Stephen Lawrence. But elsewhere in the theatre, topicality isn't what it was. More often than not, a theatre producer's idea of a news event is to celebrate the fact that someone was born or died a hundred years ago. I can think of no contemporary play that reacts to urgent, topical, political events with the rapidity, not to mention the sheer depth of response, that marks out Sean O'Casey's Juno and the Paycock.

The Information On: `Juno and the Paycock'

What Is It?

Theatre: Mild-mannered malice

JUNO AND THE PAYCOCK DONMAR WAREHOUSE LONDON
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Day In a Page

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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?