News French President Francois Hollande and Julie Gayet

Closer magazine said the 41-year-old actress had first been introduced to Mr Hollande by his former partner Ségolène Royal

`Love Story' ends in tears for Al Gore

It was the perfect ruse for adding a touch of romance to a charisma- challenged Vice-President with higher ambitions, and for seven days it had all of Washington in a tizzy. Was it to take seriously Al Gore's claim, as reported by Time magazine last Monday, that he and his wife, Tipper, were the inspiration for Hollywood's most famous tearjerker, Love Story?

Choice: Discussion: Closer, National Theatre

Closer, National Theatre, London SE1 (0171-928 2252) 10pm

Books: Inspiring lesson of les miserables

VICTOR HUGO by Graham Robb, Picador pounds 20

Romeo gets that sinking feeling

You can tell from his films that Leonardo DiCaprio likes a challenge. But was `Titanic' a trip too far?

Television: Rugged heroes with burn-out syndrome

There are three books that all educated young Englishwomen are supposed to have read by the time they fall into the arms of the man they are to marry (or they take their A- levels): Little Women, Rebecca and Jane Eyre. The last two have both been televised by ITV this year, and Little Women cannot be far behind.

HYPE ALERT

Ethan Hawke, the 24-year old star of the impossibly beguiling Before Sunrise, has his first novel published on Monday by Flamingo Press. The Hottest State is about a young actor and his experiences of love, loss and rejection. Statements claiming coincidental resemblance between author and subject will doubtless follow forthwith.

Film: Hardier than the rest, JUDE Michael Winterbottom (15)

This is not pretty costume drama. It's tragic, raw and brutal. As it should be. By Adam Mars-Jones

TWENTYSOMETHING

Not yet 21, Kate Winslet is established as Hollywood's favourite young British actor. She still can't believe her luck

Graves, the new destination

Should we go sightseeing at the Titanic? Godfrey Hodgson asks when we may break an ancient taboo

'It would be cheaper to lower the Atlantic'

(So said Lew Grade in 1979. Yesterday the pounds 3.3m operation to rais e the Titanic was abandoned)

Music on Radio: The age of innocence;

If music is a real concern, there can be few more revealing experiences than switching on the radio in the middle of a fascinating piece one has never heard, only to discover at the end that it is by a composer one thought one loathed. Back in the 1970s, Radio 3 actually used to connive at such epiphanies with a series entitled The Innocent Ear, devised and usually introduced by Robert Simpson. Programmes generally comprised two or three complete works in contrasting forms and styles, about which listeners were told in advance no more than what they were scored for and how long they lasted. The object, Simpson would reiterate, was not to guess the composer - though it was always difficult to refrain from trying to - but to listen with ears uncorrupted by preconceptions. There must, indeed, be not a few who remain lastingly grateful for some discovery or other when Mr Simpson revealed all at the end of each broadcast, and who would welcome a return of the Innocent Ear idea.

CLASSIC FILM COLLECTION

Old gold: a film buff's guide to On Golden Pond

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 FILM FIRST KNIGHT

Julia Ormond meets Richard Gere en route to marrying Sean Connery courtesy of Camelot. Not the lottery you understand, we're talking the Round Table. King Arthur meets the director of Ghost and the writer of Shadowlands - together they dream up a truly terrible title.
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Independent Travel
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
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Prices correct as of 12 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