Arts and Entertainment

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

Film: Britcom targets the big screen

As 'Notting Hill' cleans up in America, Louise Jury reports on the stars of TV comedy who have their sights set higher

The enduring war

The First World War continues to haunt us. Why? A new TV series attempts to separate the myths from the bloody reality

Arts: I never talk to strangers

Don't bother trying to win over Miranda Richardson. She does the seducing, OK?

The Critics: Every film-goer's dream

Notting Hill Director: Roger Michell Starring: Hugh Grant, Julia Roberts, Rhys Ifans (123 mins; 15)

Profile: Richard Curtis - From gags to riches

`Notting Hill' is charming, witty, delightful. But has the writer of `Blackadder' gone soft?

Film: The Big Picture: First among sequels?

NOTTING HILL (15) DIRECTOR: ROGER MICHELL STARRING: HUGH GRANT, JULIA ROBERTS, RHYS IFANS 123 MINS

It's Notting Hill, but not as I know it

The hype has been with us ever since Julia flew in on Concorde last summer and the Portobello Road was carpeted with artificial snow. Richard Curtis rides again with not a sequel to, but a sort of reprise of, the nation's favourite romantic comedy, Four Weddings and a Funeral. Finally, five years on from Curtis's low-budget triumph, we're within spitting distance of seeing Hugh Grant scoring with another chick from across the pond.

Christmas books: Humour - You won't believe this...

Steer clear of the spin-offs, says Martin Rowson. Stick to the cartoons

Rallying: Mr Bean a vintage runner at 61

BOB BEAN first entered the RAC Rally the year England won the World Cup, 1966, long before he gained his current identity.

Altogether now... breathe

A COUPLE of years ago, I was looking for a poem of Auden's which I couldn't lay my hands on, so I went to Charing Cross Road to look for it. Foyle's was the first shop I went into, and was genuinely shocked to find the shelves bare of his books. I became angry: this great English poet unrepresented in what was once an international byword for bookshops. "Do you realise," I said, tersely, to the assistant, "that there is not a single copy of any book by W H Auden in stock?" "Yes," he replied, "and it's your fault." It was shortly after the release of Four Weddings and a Funeral. I knew that there had been a bit of a rush on "Funeral Blues", so memorably spoken by John Hannah in the film, but had no idea that Auden had literally reached the best-seller lists. It was a striking reminder of how poetry, the Cinderella of the written word, with sales in single figures, can, spoken aloud, be the most popular of all literary genres.

Don't get mad, get rational

Miranda Richardson faces a new screen challenge: playing `Mrs Normal' for once. Interview by James Rampton

In the News: Rowan Atkinson - The recluse who engineered his way to stardom

BACK in his student days, Rowan Atkinson wanted to be an electrical engineer. It is an image that is hard to match with the rubber-faced comedian whose alter-ego, Mr Bean, is one of the best-known comic creations on British television, writes Kate Watson-Smyth.

Rugby Union: The serious side of Blackadder

The captain of the team they call the second best in the world has one ambition - to play for the best team; David Llewellyn talks to the leader of the first-rate All Black Second XV

CINEMA: A half-baked Bean who should have stayed in Britain

Mr Bean is the world's most popular in-flight entertainment, and understandably so. Half-asleep between bouts of air-sickness is undoubtedly the best way to watch it. But now Rowan Atkinson has brought his creepy TV character to the big screen, his audience no longer has the option of taking off the headphones and reading a book instead.

Mr Magoo with malice

The puerile Mr Bean has made it from TV to the big screen, from London to Los Angeles. But the idiot's-eye outlook he offers remains the same
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Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

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Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

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and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

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