box-office charts

TOP 10 UK

TOP 10 LONDON GROSSERS: Films

1. Men in Black

CRITIC'S CHOICE: Films

1. The Full Monty

CRITIC'S CHOICEPeter Conchie

1. Grosse Pointe

TOP 10 GROSSERS

1. Men in Black

ON FILM: TOP FILMS

TOP 10 GROSSERS

POP & JAZZ: THE CHARTS

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`Men in Black' sets box office record

The sci-fi action comedy Men In Black has broken British box office records in its opening weekend, makers Columbia Tristar claimed yesterday. The film starring Will Smith (left) and Tommy Lee Jones as men "protecting the Earth from the scum of the universe", took pounds 7,066,748 at the turnstiles up to Sunday night.

The man in black is laughing

Walter Parkes had spent the morning with his family at the Tower of London. "I introduced my five-year-old to the concept of beheading," he said with a grin as we sat in a room of his suite in a quiet hotel in Knightsbridge. It was an unintentionally apt remark, because as one of Hollywood's leading movie executives, the 46-year-old Parkes knows more than most that getting the chop is all part of the game. But at the moment he's flying high. He and his wife, Laurie MacDonald, were recently appointed as heads of the motion pic- tures division of DreamWorks, the company set up by Steven Spielberg, David Geffen and Jeffrey Katzenberg. More to the point, they also produced Men In Black, which opened in this country on Friday and will undoubtedly be this summer's blockbuster.

Cinema: It's an alien nation all right

Paranoia is last year's kick. The notion that sinister government agencies are in cahoots with aliens and have pirated their technology for state ends is such a widely touted theory that only Paul McKenna still considers it sexy. This is certainly a good thing. Area 51, Hangar 18 and assorted Roswelliana make seductive TV, but they also allow Americans to excuse themselves from taking responsibility for the governments they elect. If there is a smorgasbord of pickled alien DNA stored in the Pentagon, or if there are black-suited, Ray-Banned agents rubbing out Mulders and Scullies who know too much, then all political action is pointless. So drama about state sponsored UFO-abduction is more about comfort than terror: as for the idea that people get the governments they deserve, now that's terrifying.

Film: An alien act

Men in Black Barry Sonnenfeld (PG)

There's no business like UFO business

As The 4th of July holiday got under way this weekend, America was caught in a rush of alien fever. On Mars, Nasa successfully landed the Pathfinder probe, hoping for fresh evidence that the Red Planet could support life. Thousands of people jammed remote Roswell, New Mexico, for the 50th anniversary jamboree of the supposed crash landing of an alien craft. In Los Angeles, meanwhile, "Tony", a woman caller to one of the countless radio shows on UFOs, came up with a bizarre new twist by insisting that the US government was planting Hollywood science fiction films to soften us up for fresh revelations about extra-terrestrial life.

US storms back to the last frontier

Mars landing sparks patriotic new interest in space journeys, both real and slightly fictional

Words of the Week: The girl should be Grace but she is in Monaco being a Princess

Evan Hunter, aka Ed McBain, wrote the screenplay for the film `The Birds', starring Tippi Hedren, right. He discussed the movie - and Alfred Hitchcock - with Sheridan Morley, at the National Film Theatre

Cinemas enjoy blockbuster year

ENTERTAINMENT
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books
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The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Sport
Diego Costa
footballEverton 3 Chelsea 6: Diego Costa double has manager purring
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
techSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
Arts and Entertainment
The 'three chords and the truth gal' performing at the Cornbury Music Festival, Oxford, earlier this summer
music... so how did she become country music's hottest new star?
Life and Style
The spy mistress-general: A lecturer in nutritional therapy in her modern life, Heather Rosa favours a Byzantine look topped off with a squid and a schooner
fashionEurope's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln
News
Dr Alice Roberts in front of a
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i100
Arts and Entertainment
Star turns: Montacute House
tv
Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution