Arts and Entertainment

Mario Testino’s talent with a camera must be maddening for other photographers working in a highly competitive field, but he remains one of the most revered stars in his profession. Testino has a natural ability to float effortlessly from studio to backstage to after-party, producing stunning shots in any kind of situation. From royals to mega-celebrities, Testino has shot some of the world’s most inaccessible subjects, always with an ease that betrays the complexity of the task. When Testino gets “in your face” he captures you at your best — and that is what makes him the best.

His Dark Materials, Birmingham Rep, Birmingham

Call me earth-bound in my imagination but I'm not entirely sure why Philip Pullman's fantasy trilogy His Dark Materials has exerted quite such a hold over so many readers worldwide. The story revolves around Lyra and her adventures with her pal Will as they drop in and out of parallel universes against an intricate backdrop of storylines involving physics, philosophy and religion. Added to this is the dangerous search for the source of Dust. (That's panpsychic particles of self-awareness.)

Kathy Marks: From Australia ... an epic let-down

The film was meant to define the national psyche. Such hubris ...

Philip Hensher: Please can I be Nigella's friend?

I don't know about you, but we've been enjoying Nigella Lawson's hired friends so much we think they ought to make a sitcom about them. You know the ones I mean. Nigella, in the course of her multi-evening Christmas spectacular, has been slaving in a négligée over some white-trash pot dish – turkey stewed in 7-UP can't be far away. She sprinkles some random coriander over the top, and hands it out to her guests. The Hired Friends Of Nigella Lawson. Scrub the bit about the sitcom. It sounds like an existential tragedy by Rainer Werner Fassbinder.

Great Gatsby to get the Moulin Rouge treatment

Luhrmann to make 21st-century film version of Fitzgerald's classic

Australia (12A)

Big, empty, and a long journey

Luhrmann epic 'still not finished'

Baz Luhrmann says his epic Australia is still not finished.

Nicole Kidman: 'I've been through a lot in my life'

Her career has arced from gauche newcomer and Tom Cruise's wife to stardom in her own right. Now, the Baz Luhrmann epic Australia is a spectacular homecoming for the actress. She talks to Elaine Lipworth

Beale's Best in show: Tourism Australia

Baz Luhrmann probably considers himself an artist. He makes big commercial movies (Romeo & Juliet, Moulin Rouge) but he also makes commercials (Nicole Kidman in an ad for Chanel No 5). And now he’s made an ad for Tourism Australia.

Christian protests may leave Philip Pullman's trilogy as one of a kind

Perhaps it has disappeared through a window into another universe, like its characters.

Celebrity baby: Solomon Grundy's got nothing on poor little Sunday Rose

Among the upper echelons of superstardom it seems the fashion for naming your child something downright ridiculous has not died down. As if Fifi Trixibelle and Peaches Honeyblossom were not bad enough, now Nicole Kidman has bestowed on her daughter the unwanted gift of the name Sunday Rose. At first this fate seems passable, until you learn that she was born on a Monday.

Nicole Kidman gives birth to girl



Nicole Kidman gave birth on a Monday to a baby girl named Sunday.

The Golden Compass, Retail & Rental

The makers of 'The Golden Compass' have taken the 'Supermarket Sweep' approach to adapting Philip Pullman's fantasy novel, in that they charge through it, grabbing as many of the key scenes as they can, without pausing to consider whether those scenes fit together to make a coherent film.

Margot at the Wedding, 15

The ultimate black comedy: a family

Paperback: Made For Each Other, by Bronwyn Cosgrave

Bloomsbury £8.99 (308pp)
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
The Pipes and Drums of The Scottish Regiments perform during the Opening Ceremony for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park on July 23, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Commonwealth GamesThe actor encouraged the one billion viewers of the event to donate to the children's charity
Sport
Karen Dunbar performs
Entertainers showcase local wit, talent and irrepressible spirit
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
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Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
News
Very tasty: Vladimir Putin dining alone, perhaps sensibly
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Life and Style
Listen here: Apple EarPods offer an alternative
techAre custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?
News
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
books
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Joining forces: young British men feature in an Isis video in which they urge Islamists in the West to join them in Iraq and Syria
newsWill the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements