Jonesboro massacre: 'Not here' - the mantra that everyone in rural America is chanting in disbelief

NOT HERE. This is the mantra being spoken in Jonesboro in the aftermath of Tuesday's Westside carnage. This kind of horror belongs in the urban wastelands of Chicago, Los Angeles or New York City. But not in our town, not in rural and suburban America. How, then, to explain the fact that the three fatal school rampages that have shaken this country in five months have all been in not-here places?

Film: Titanic: is it really the sail of the century?

Is it possible for a film to be the biggest box-office success ever ... and still be a turkey? John Lyttle says yes

e-mail > female: I am bored rigid by leonardo dicaprio too ...

From ClarissaH@greatestates. co.uk

Letter: Aaronovitch fan club

DAVID AARONOVITCH should not fret over the inattentive women in the Canary Wharf lift ("Just suppose I looked like Leonardo DiCaprio...", 21 March), for he is the thinking woman's crumpet. I am not the only wannabe second Mrs Aaronovitch. No, we are a multitude.

50 ways to drown a movie star

By Rosa Prince and Michael Greenwood

Film: Lean and mean and full of genes

Film: Lean and mean and full of genes

Mad about the boys

Young men, says Mark Simpson, have replaced young women as society's crumpet of choice. Meet the Nu-Buck, the tough yet tender, smooth-cheeked and pert-bottomed sex symbol for the Nineties (but don't worry girls, you can be Nu-Bucks too)

Just suppose I looked like Leonardo DiCaprio . . .

on the pros and cons of lookism

New Films: Born under the sign of Pyrex

also showing

Why America's teenage girls can't get enough of 'Titanic'

The boat may sink, but a new feminist role model has risen on the silver screen

Letter: Titanic injustice

THE FILM, Titanic gives an unfair portrayal of my grandfather, Bruce Ismay, chairman of the White Star Line. Please allow me to set the record straight.

Yes, Zippergate is unedifying - but have you heard the latest joke...

You couldn't escape Zippergate '98 anywhere this week, even at the Whitbread Book of the Year party on Tuesday. Despite the presence of Commons luminaries (Chris Smith, Mark Fisher), literary controversialists (Raymond Seitz, Salman Rushdie) and assorted televisual dreamboats (Mariella Frostrup, Kate Adie, Clive Anderson, Alexei Sayle), the level of conversation remained distressingly groinal. "What's the difference between Bill Clinton and the Titanic?" I was asked by a serious bluestocking in black crepe. "Only 1,500 people went down on the Titanic." As Sir Michael Angus, the sponsor's bluff chairman, praised the world of imaginative literature, a note was pushed across to me by a famously dour publisher. "Why does Bill Clinton wear underpants?" it read. "To keep his ankles warm." We ate delicious breast of guinea fowl with pancetta and shallots, and discussed the first stirrings of magic realism in 19th-century Irish writing. On stage, Jeremy Treglown made an impassioned plea for more enlightened subsidies for writers. "Have you any idea," hissed a passing voice, "what Bill Clinton says to his wife, immediately after sex? He says, `I'll be home in half an hour, darling'." It went on like that, intermingled with some awed discussion of the spectacular resurrection of Ted Hughes's reputation (his Tales from Ovid won the big prize, while the Plath poems, Birthday Letters, will be the country's number one bestseller this weekend, the most popular verse collection since Larkin's Collected Poems). Alas, it wasn't long before someone was asking, "What's the most popular game at the White House? Swallow My Leader."

Cinema: Kate Winslet: the sinking man's crumpet

TITANIC (12) is one of the most spectacular films ever made. It's also one of the most badly written. And yet, despite the abyss between James Cameron's meagre screenwriting talents and the apocalyptic grandeur of his direction, Titanic stays afloat. The dialogue may be unspeakable, but the film remains unsinkable.

Film: I've got that sinking feeling

the big picture
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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
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
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

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
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

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick