Roald Dahl

Tom Sutcliffe: Wes Anderson is so animating

I finally "got" Wes Anderson the other day. Which is not to say that I hadn't "got" him before – in the sense of liking his work and always being willing to substitute his vision of the world for mine for an hour or two. Though I'm not very fond of fey art-house whimsy (see references to Miranda July passim), there has always been something about.

99 Days out for the family: See a show 90-99

Catch the last three dates in Birmingham Hippodromes's Six Summer Saturdays free programme of city-centre events, which runs until 13 August. Performances include street theatre, interactive brass bands, circus acts and acrobatics, as well as comedy and upside down painting (

Roald Dahl's Twisted Tales, Lyric Hammersmith, London

Theatre is on a roll with Roald at the moment. The RSC's Matilda has just received a gong at the Critics' Circle Awards, the presenter fulsomely declaring it to be the best new British musical that he had witnessed in 27 years of reviewing. But this new stage version of some of the author's aimed-at-adults Tales of the Unexpected at the Lyric Hammersmith strikes me as more than a couple of shudders short of the full Dahl. I have only two problems with it. I hate the stories themselves and I find the theatrical adaptation of them largely spurious in the chills department.

The Gruffalo, Garrick Theatre, London

In the 10 years since it was published, The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson (story) and Axel Scheffler (pictures) has become a much-loved classic, proving that big furry creatures who roar can be kind at heart, and a mouse may look at a monster, just as a cat may look at a king.

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Storyteller: The Life Of Roald Dahl, By Donald Sturrock

A mere 16 years ago, Jeremy Treglown wrote a well-reviewed biography of Roald Dahl. Yet Dahl's daughter Ophelia asked Donald Sturrock to do the job again – fulfilling a task her father had assigned her: to write his life story or appoint someone else. In a 2002 interview, Ophelia said Treglown's book portrayed her father as "a difficult, demanding, unpleasant old bugger... it didn't show his funny, kind side." This time the family, which granted access to letters and papers, also did not interfere. They asked only that Sturrock conveyed the man that he knew and liked. He has succeeded.