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For its title sequence, The Full Monty (15) resurrects a Seventies promo film for Sheffield, a showreel that may have influenced the aesthetic Weltanschauung of a young Jarvis Cocker. It's new-town retro with a hint of Soviet optimism. Tower blocks gleam in the sun, buses cruise around new concrete roundabouts, molten steel bubbles in crucibles. A smoothly cheerful voiceover that might once have been used to advertise Dralon Zed beds enumerates the city's industrial triumphs. Then the screen blacks out with the caption, "25 years later". We're in the present day, and civic modernism has been discredited by the heritage pub, stone cladding, and the fact that Marxism is dead as Adorno. In The Full Monty's Sheffield the working man is an oxymoron. The only way male dignity can be re- invented is for blokes to get their kits off and wave their todgers in the air.

CONSPIRACY THEORY Director: Richard Donner Starring: Mel Gibson, Julia Roberts, Patrick Stewart (15)

There is a sequence about 30 minutes into this initially promising thriller which suggests that there may be something more to what we're seeing than meets the eye. As a paranoid New York cabbie and the brains behind a conspiracy theory newsletter, Mel Gibson seems at first like your usual opinionated, motor-mouthed taxi-driver. The film opens with him detailing various conspiracy theories to hapless passengers who simply stare in amazement at his ability to talk - and talk drivel - without taking a breath.

Just because you're paranoid...

Conspiracy Theory Richard Donner (15) The Full Monty Peter Cattaneo (15)

david aaronovitch

It has been reported this week that the Foreign Secretary, Mr Robin Cook (henceforth to be known only as Robin), is to circulate those who lie abroad for their country with a special video, introducing himself and his policies. Previously they only received a short note reading something like "Dear colleague. My name's Malcolm. I'm another Tory. I want Britain to be at the heart of Europe. Cheers."

Mel Gibson meets Derrida

It's one of the most popular university courses. But is cultural studies of intellectual value, or a refuge for lazy charlatans?

`Scalping' exposed at Villa Park

The news agency Associated Press can always be relied upon to provide a peculiarly American perspective on what we call "football" and they call "soccer" - its reports on matches played in the States can often read like descriptions of a totally different sport.

THE NEW WALLACE CONNECTION

Once they were fearsome medieval warriors; today they fight on

`Braveheart' in League of his own

If you want to understand what really happened in Italy's general election, ask Mel Gibson. Or rather, marvel at the timing with which his film Braveheart swept the Oscars last month. His tale of William Wallace's revolt against the English provided the Northern League, the volatile separatist movement that rails against the iniquities of rule from Rome, with the perfect symbol for its poll campaign.

Two hundred diners in search of a stereotype and celluloid Scots

"ODDLY enough, Trollope himself was not a great admirer of Lincoln's Inn."

Film: The oscar box

Last week we asked film pundits to name their best and worst Oscar awards. Here, they give their verdicts on this year's results...

FILM: OSCAR RESULTS IN FULL

BEST PICTURE: Braveheart

Bravehearts and statuettes

Oscars special: Susan Sarandon, the bookies' hot favourite to take the Best Actress prize at tomorrow night's Academy Awards, talks to Daniel Jeffreys As the nominees await their fate, David Thomson offers his Oscar predictions

Contempt and content for a crime without punishment

THE SCOTT REPORT

Scotland learns from epic lost to Ireland

Scotland's film industry was revitalised by Mel Gibson's decision to film much of his epic Braveheart about Scots hero William Wallace ... in Ireland, Scottish arts minister Lord Lindsay said yesterday.
Sport
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cricket Follow over-by-over coverage as rivals New Zealand and Australia face off
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Zayn has become the first member to leave One Direction. 'I have to do what feels right in my heart,' he said
peopleWe wince at anguish of fans, but his 1D departure shows the perils of fame in the social media age
Life and Style
Researchers found that just 10 one-minute swill-and-spit sessions are enough to soften tooth enamel and make teeth vulnerable to erosion
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Arts and Entertainment
The Regent Street Cinema’s projection room in the 1920s
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News
Leah Devine is only the ninth female to have made the Young Magician of the Year final since the contest began more than 50 years
peopleMeet the 16-year-old who has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year
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Jonathan Anderson was born in Northern Ireland but now based between London, where he presents a line named JW Anderson
peopleBritish designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
News
Andy Davidhazy at the beginning (left) and end (right) of his hike
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Taylor Swift is applying to trademark song lyrics from 1989
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Voices
The popularity of TV shows such as The Liver Birds encouraged Liverpudlians to exaggerate their Scouse accent
voicesWe exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
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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
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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