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Britain is at a crossroads. It needs the radical and thought-through responses which expertise from humanities and social science can provide

FILMS: RECORDED DELIVERY

Kissed (18) Hi Fliers, rental, 3 Jul

Video rental

1 Tomorrow Never Dies (12)

Coming up roses

Take a vintage Forties slip, trim with fur, applique, beading or silk flowers, add Deborah Anderson's unerring sense of style and you have Belle Aura, the label poor little rich girls are desperate to be seen in. Hester Lacey met its founder

Cannes Diary: Aliens and gut reactions

ALONGSIDE the Palme D'Or I would like to see a special award for La Grande Gaffe. The lifetime achievement award for a Cannes Gaffe belongs, of course, to former Conservative arts minister Stephen Dorrell, who came here a couple of years back and praised the then president of the festival jury, the exquisite actress Jeanne Moreau, as "a great Frenchman". He needed several bodyguards when he walked down the Croisette after that.

Cinema: Ho Hum, Lo'll make you glum

SO MUCH foaming-mouthed rubbish has been written about Adrian Lyne's Lolita (18) that it's hard to see it as a film, and not a moral test for the viewer. The truth is, Lyne has gone to great lengths to turn Nabokov's blistering black comedy into a sober, efficient, rather wistful literary adaptation. OK, so he's not Atom Egoyan. But he's not Ken Russell, either. Don't expect to see Jeremy Irons dribbling on his flasher mac as he sings "Thank Heaven for Little Girls". If you want better evidence for Lyne's depravity, look to 91/2 Weeks or Fatal Attraction.

New films: box-0ffice UK

1 Alien Resurrection

New films: box-0ffice Us

1 Flubber

New Films: The Big Picture - The mother of all monsters

Science-fiction or horror films are doomed never to be taken seriously enough, except by people who wear outsized wind-cheaters and talk to themselves a lot, but the first two alien movies were unusual in gaining serious respect. It may be that Alien Resurrection, the fourth in the series, is the first to truly challenge the codes of its chosen genre, rather than simply adhere to them. Nothing has changed in the construction, but there's something primal and unsettling at the heart of the movie that goes beyond simple frights.

Film Interview: Alienated? Excuse my French ...

When Jean-Pierre Jeunet got the call to go to Hollywood to direct the latest `Alien' film, he knew it was time to learn some English, get on a plane, and compromise the principles of a lifetime.

Monday's book: Can You Have It All? Nicola Horlick (Macmillan pounds 16.99)

"You'll get fucking nowhere like that!" One of the many joys of working for Stan Reynolds on Punch was his ability to go from nought to foaming in a pico-second.

The pen may be mightier than the sword but the sheep are mightier than the pen

Marele Day has written a very good, very strange novel which has transformed her career. She was a modestly successful crime writer but `Lambs of God',

RECORDED DELIVERY; A critical guide to the week's videos

The Crucible (12) Fox, rental, 15 Sept (above). Based on Arthur Miller's enduringly disturbing play about the 17th-century witch trials in Salem, Nicholas Hytner's rendition is terrifying. The complacent puritanism of a small community is turned upside-down by a gaggle of young girls, led by the demented Abigail (Winona Ryder), who are discovered dancing around a bonfire and casting love spells in the woods. Fearing punishment, they blame the devil and accuse other villagers of encouraging them with Satanic visitations. A witchcraft expert is called in who embarks on a ruthless cleansing of the town. There is some ferocious acting from Daniel Day-Lewis as John Proctor, a farmer who becomes embroiled in the witch- hunting through a past affair with Abigail, and a stern performance from Paul Scofield as the magisterial judge.

Robidoux ends his long wait at the Crucible

It took a long time coming but Alain Robidoux yesterday won his first match at the Crucible since 1992 to qualify for the second round of the Embassy World Championship. The French-Canadian beat Brian Morgan 10-8 for only his third-ever victory in Sheffield.

Ebdon's crack at the Crucible

Peter Ebdon knows how it feels to be tested in the Crucible, the Sheffield theatre which has been the home of the World Championship for 20 years.

expert eye; No 7: Elizabeth Brooke, white witch, on 'The Crucible'

At the beginning of the film, what goes on is voodoo rather than witchcraft. Tituba is from the Caribbean, so it is more than likely that she has some knowledge of voodoo. The film did show a small amount of healing, with Rebecca Nurse healing the priest's daughter and bringing her back to life. But there was no actual witchcraft shown. The young girls danced in the field, but that wasn't witchcraft. It was more likely a release from the discipline and restriction of their society. But all that stuff with frogs, and tearing open a bird to drink the blood was more like Satanism.
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