A cat with nine former lives

Also showing: COPYCAT Jon Amiel (18) HACKERS Iain Softley (12) MARY REILLY Stephen Frears (15) BARB WIRE David Hogan (15) BOYFRIENDS Neil Hunter / Tom Hunsinger (nc) REBECCA Alfred Hitchcock (PG)

The fine art of killing

The killer as artist, the victim as installation: this is Hollywood's aesthetic response to serial murder. By Kim Newman

please spare me the wurgly bits

THE suzi feay COLUMN

Sex and the single boy

A British actor goes to Hollywood and gets screwed. Same old story. Thank heavens, then, for a film year shaped by strong women. By Chris Peachment

Death and the maiden

John Berger's new novel is a simple and affecting essay in humanism. By DJ Taylor; To The Wedding by John Berger Bloomsbury, pounds 13.99

ARTS Heavyweight champion

SHOW PEOPLE BEN KINGSLEY

Perfect love on the night train

Cinema

ARTS Truly, madly, discerningly

SHOW PEOPLE JULIET STEVENSON

Brimming with konfidenz

The play that made his name has now been filmed by Roman Polanski. But there is more to Ariel Dorfman than Death and the Maiden. Clare Bayley reports

True Gripes: Aliens nightmare: Action event should be X-rated

I don't particularly like horror films. I miss half of them as I cower pathetically behind a cushion. But this is, in effect, what the British Board of Film Classification does. It acts as a cushion to hide unsuitable films from the eyes of children.

FILM / Mr Kline goes to Washington

WOULD YOU take a bullet for the leader of the free world? That is what Secret Service men in Hollywood movies are asking themselves right now, as the fields of the republic grow darker and the White House loses its sheen. Clint Eastwood's agent Frank Horrigan gave the positive, patriotic response in In the Line of Fire, but, then, he was a relic of the Kennedy era, with a debt to pay off for the dimming of its one brief shining moment. The agent who is asked the question in Ivan Reitman's political comedy Dave (12), a glum black officer with more than the regulation-issue wariness, has to ponder it. He is asking not what he can do for his country, but whether his country is done for.

INTERACTIVE / Spawning a monster: The Aliens set has been recreated at the Trocadero. Dominic Cavendish prepares to hyperventilate

Down a dingy basement corridor in the Trocadero, Picadilly, a dozen men and women clad in combat gear are grimly clasping M41A pulse rifles. Whenever a shopper passes, they leap forward, all smiles, and hand out a leaflet. The sight is faintly ridiculous. But then the idea of people posing as space marines in order to lead members of the public through a mock-up of the Aliens set, while all hell breaks loose around them, sounds a tricky one to pull off.

FIL / Go ahead, remake my day

IT WAS Bill Murray who in Ghostbusters provided the still centre for the swelling tornadoes of special effects. When a demoness did spectacular multiple somersaults over his head he murmured to no one in particular 'Nimble little minx, isn't she?' and gave no indication that his heart rate had increased by so much as a beat.

Profile: Coining it at the Murray mint: Sheila Johnston explores the dubious but undeniable appeal of Bill Murray

What is it with Bill Murray? He frequently plays meanies - the anti-Christmas curmudgeon in Scrooged; the infinitely irritating neurotic who makes his shrink (Richard Dreyfuss) lose his rag in What About Bob?; a conceited weatherman in his new film Groundhog Day; and an eccentric, egocentric small-time hood in the forthcoming Mad Dog and Glory.

FILM / Reigning cats and dogs: John Lyttle looks at the best (and worst) of the latest crop of video releases

SLEEPWALKERS (Columbia / Tristar, cert 18, 86mins). Incestuous feline vampire couple slink into tiny, curiously Fifties American town and suck the life-force from local virgins. It's a wonder they don't starve. Stephen King has bitched long and hard about the liberties film-makers have taken with his work (usually with justification). He'll have a harder job complaining in future, having penned Sleepwalkers directly for the screen himself, only to blow his own disturbing scenario in a welter of massed cat attacks and bleeding wounds. Solid special effects - the shape-shifting kitties enjoy the gift of invisibility - although effective performances from hot mama Alice Krige and pouting sacrifice Madchen Amick are wasted. Buffs will note the otherwise meaningless cameo appearances of horror icons Clive Barker, John Landis, et al. On release.
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