News

Outlook Champagne bonuses, Christmas cracker competitions, "Grand in your Hand" contests: welcome to the wacky world of Lloyds bank's staff incentive plans.

David Fincher with 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' star Rooney Mara in Stockholm

The anti-social network: Why David Fincher is the perfect man for 'The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo'

Need a severed head in a box? He's your man. Not sure if rape and murder are appropriate for a blockbuster? Let David Fincher convince you. James Mottram meets the owner of Hollywood's darkest mind, as he takes on the US remake of 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo'

Box-office sales surge as theatre defies downturn

Box office takings at London's theatres have bounced back from a winter slump thanks to a string of big productions and star performers.

Culture Club: Horrible Bosses

Readers review this week's big film

Leading article: A king for all seasons

The quintessential actor, Samuel Johnson once said, is "a fellow who claps a hump on his back... and cries, 'I am Richard the Third'." Interesting then that Kevin Spacey, playing Richard III at the Old Vic, sports a hump which our critic describes as "brutally disfiguring".

On the frontline in the battle of the sexes

Morgan Lloyd Malcolm's first West End play, 'Belongings', will confirm her as an exciting new talent, says Alice Jones

My secret life: James Ellroy, author, 62

My parents were ... good-looking LA arrivistes. They were ill-suited for parenthood, so I'm not surprised that I turned out to be both as troubled and gifted as I am.

Album: Eliza Carthy & Norma Waterson, Gift (Topic)

The cover photo – of mother's and daughter's bangled hands clasped together – tells its own story, of folk and family traditions passed along the line.

Gary Newbon: The usual suspects but watch out for Holland

Sadly England will not win the World Cup. Reachinng the quarter-finals would be decent, making the semis, would be very good.

Also showing

Ditch, Old Vic Tunnels, London

Two minutes' walk from Waterloo Station and a little, graffiti-covered door in a side wall grants you access to a starkly different world. Cold, smelling of mould, and resounding to the thunder of the trains hurtling overhead, this massive underground labyrinth of high, vaulted brick tunnels forms a magical space that has been commandeered by the Old Vic's artistic director, Kevin Spacey, as a subterranean arena for non-profit theatre pieces and art works.

DVD: The Men Who Stare at Goats, For retail & rental (Momentum)

Jon Ronson's book about the Pentagon's secret experiments in psychic combat has been turned into a film in the most unsatisfying possible manner.

DVD: The Men Who Stare At Goats (15)

Jon Ronson's droll and troubling exposé of the US military's bizarre practices – which included forming an experimental unit that employed paranormal techniques (such as killing goats by just staring at them) to train a legion of "Jedi warriors" – has been adapted into this weak satire.

DVD & Blu-ray: Moon (15), Duncan Jones (97 mins)

Duncan "David Bowie's son" Jones's low-fi sci-fi, which features no sex, very little violence or budget and ostensibly one actor (Sam Rockwell), is a cerebral delight. Sam Bell (Rockwell), like ET, just wants to go home; three years working on the dark side of the Moon with only Kevin Spacey's creepy voice, as spaceship computer, Gerty, will do that. Sam's suffering hallucinations and headaches and a near-fatal accident lands him in the infirmary. He awakes to find a younger version of himself stalking his bed. Jones's intelligently constructed, distinctly retro film borrows from the best – Silent Running, Alien, Blade Runner, Solaris, Dark Star and Outland – and is the best kind of paranoia movie, with unfussy dialogue, a heightened sense of isolation and corporate wickedness to the fore.

A frightening 24 hours for thespians

On Halloween night an eclectic bunch of actors and writers gathered in the auditorium of London’s Old Vic theatre preparing to write, rehearse and perform six plays in 24 hours to raise cash for charity.

Album: Various artists, Freedom, Rhythm & Sound, (Soul Jazz)

As with previous Gilles Peterson compilations, there's a few tracks here that make you wonder whether he listened all the way through, but once past the dodgy vocals and workaday vamps, this two-CD collection of revolutionary US funky free-jazz contains real goodies.

Latest stories from i100
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 12 March 2015
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing