Arts and Entertainment Family values: 'It's a Wonderful Life'

The Independent's film critic selects the ten best festive flicks

CINEMA : Crash: did we wait so long for this?

'Beyond depravity' was the verdict of one commentator. Westminster Council agreed. But the fuss was surely misplaced

THE EYE ON NEW FILMS

Crash

Cinema: Drunk and wasted in south London

Gary Oldman has gone back to his roots for his directorial debut, and it's a tough tale of drink, drugs and dysfunction. By Simon Tiffin

CINEMA: Return of the Lynch mob

Ever since `Twin Peaks', David Lynch's career has foundered. Dennis Lim asks if his new film marks a return to form

TAKING A LEAF OUT OF FIGGIS'S BOOK: Film

With his fuzzy head of curls and droopy Sixties tash, pioneering actor, jazz musician and film director, Mike Figgis, doesn't resemble your typical Renaissance man, or, for that matter, a power-broking player in the movie business. Yet this unorthodox Geordie has the kind of rocket- fuelled energy and charisma to succeed at three careers when most of us can only scratch a living from one.

New Films: Home for the Holidays

Director: Jodie Foster. Starring: Holly Hunter, Robert Downey Jr, Anne Bancroft, Charles Durning (15)

A little shaken, but not stirred

FILM

Film: Machine guns and oboes

THE ROCK Michael Bay (15); San Francisco threatened by deadly bath products? Sounds like a tough job for Connery and Cage. By Adam Mars-Jones

Film: Fading starshine

THE OSCARS: Ryan Gilbey takes a cool look at this year's victors

I'd just like to thank...

Not so fast. Very little is clear-cut about this year's Academy Awards, except that the British should be worried. At least, that's what they're saying in Hollywood. By Daniel Jeffreys

Sense, sensibility and Austen's seven nominations

Jane Austen was not represented in any category but her modern co-writer, Emma Thompson, made Hollywood history yesterday, earning Oscar nominations for both best actress and best screenplay. The Academy Awards will be presented on 25 March.

Self-loathing in Las Vegas

A brilliant film, a hymn to self-destructiveness: Mike Figgis is back and on form.

CAGED HEAT

After years of 'wacko Method masochism', Nicolas Cage is being tipped for an Oscar. David Thomson talked to him

The main events

QUENTIN CURTIS'S GUIDE TO THE LONDON FILM FESTIVAL 1995

also showing; He's a cloud. She's a blade of grass

Ermo Zhou Xiaowen (no cert)
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