Arts and Entertainment

Cutie and the Boxer (E) Zachary Heinzerling, DVD (82mins)

Stars take on 24 Hour Plays gala challenge

Some of the biggest names in theatre descended on London’s Old Vic over the weekend to write and perform six plays from scratch as part of the theatre’s seventh “24 Hour Plays” celebrity gala.

Dominic Lawson: Kill a schoolchild. How hilarious

Richard Curtis will have his latest film hanging round his neck like a stinking fish for as long as he is successful enough to be worth mocking

Climate change film blows up in Richard Curtis's face

When it comes to galvanising support for the fight against climate change, many methods have been tried, from switching out the lights in London skyscrapers to handing out free low-energy bulbs. Until now though, no one had thought of detonating two schoolchildren in front of their blood-smeared classmates.

David Flatman: My Blackadder accent is mocked but cunning plan now is to rest

A meaty, fun tour rounds off a long, hard season – and smiling at the haka is a perfect way to bow out

IRB to seek solution to rising injury toll and excessive kicking

Rugby's governing body to host conference in Dublin next month in attempt to address major problems afflicting the sport

Film in 2009: Cheers for sink-estate misery. Jeers for a boat that plopped

'Fish Tank' by Andrea Arnold dazzled, but Richard Curtis seemed to have lost his golden touch

Is this a magic formula to attract young people back to television?

E4's hit teen shows include Skins and Misfits but it's still criticised for making 'vacuous pap'. The controller Angela Jain argues her case to Ian Burrell

The Merry Gentleman (15)

Michael Keaton's directorial debut is a low-key character study which just about survives its odd shifts of tone.

For the record: 14/09/2009

"I'm out! I'm free!" Stephen Farrell calls the New York Times's foreign desk after being rescued from Taliban kidnappers by British special forces

DVD: The Boat that Rocked, For retail & rental (Universal)

Four Weddings: funny. Notting Hill: not bad. Bridget Jones: decent. Love Actually: barely passable. Mr Bean's Holiday: oh dear. And so to TBTR, Richard Curtis's latest, which continues the plummeting trajectory.

Midsummer, Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

Only in Edinburgh might you find a rom-com which has ditties about the worst hangover in the world, a mist-wreathed Ikea car-park and a night of Japanese rope bondage gone wrong. For all that, though, Midsummer, "a play with songs" written by David Greig and Gordon McIntyre from the indie band Ballboy, remains desperately romantic.

Observations: A chance for Rhys Darby's growing fanbase to see the man behind Murray

It doesn't seem that long ago since, crammed into one of the smallest, stuffiest rooms of The Pleasance venue in Edinburgh, I watched a slightly nerdy-looking, curly-mopped comedian act out an entire comedy play using mime and sound effects.

How Blackadder changed the history of television comedy

The screenwriter and director Richard Curtis talks to Ian Burrell about his enduringly popular creation
Voices
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricket
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
film
Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
Sport
Two christmas trees ,Moonbeam (2L), Moonchester (2R) and Santa Claus outside the Etihad Stadium
footballAll the action from today's games
News
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Life and Style
food + drink
News
i100
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas