Monday, November 14, 2016

Arrival and Big Short Movie Reviews, In Flames - Battles, New Releases, and Seven Years of Blogging

Arrival Movie Review

Prepare for your mind to be blown.
Twelve alien vessels appear across the planet and Amy Adams is the linguist recruited to translate.
This is a science fiction drama – and one for your brain.
The story seems straightforward enough. In fact, you might start to wonder where the genius kicks in as the movie reveals plot points while revealing nothing.
The cast is excellent. A few minor characters, but it really focuses on the three leads. It’s probably Adams’ best role, while Jeremy Renner and Forrest Whitaker round out the cast with style.
This is a film you’ll want to watch again for all the things you missed.
All I can tell you is it will quietly blow your mind…
Highly recommended!

The Big Short Movie Review

Finally watched on NetFlix. This film follows the lead up to the housing crisis and collapse in 2007.
It’s an excellent film but also quite galling. The arrogance and stupidity of the banks will make your blood boil. Even more so knowing it all really happened.
The film follows several sets of characters. Front and center is Christian Bale, a hedge fund manager who realizes what is happening and bets against the housing market.
Several others get wind of what he’s doing and start their own investigations.
This film takes a plot that should’ve been boring and made it interesting, engaging, and funny! It’s brilliant, and you will marvel at that brilliance even as you are repelled by what the banks did to cause the collapse.
Highly recommended!

In Flames - Battles Review

Hopefully, as time goes by, we grow and develop in all aspects of our lives. As I listen to the new In Flames album, I’m reading a post by someone who absolutely hates it.
They don’t sound anything like the early days of Jester Race, he rants. They’ve lost it...they suck. (Followed by some truly, horrible remarks not fit for reprint.)
He is right about one aspect in his (I’m assuming) troll rant: they don’t sound like the band that made their first album in 1995. Does this truly surprise anybody? In Flames, like the rest of us, have grown and matured over the past twenty-one years.
Gone is the crushing Gothenburg melodic death metal. It has been slowly replaced over the past five albums with a more mainstream and accessible approach to metal. Maybe it’s because I‘m a prog fan. I grew up with bands like Rush and Yes who changed their sound over the course of their career. I enjoy the musical ride that a band, who is fortunate enough to have longevity, can take us on over the years of a career.
I have been an In Flames fan since Colony and I continue to be a fan to this day. The new album is filled with catchy choruses and infectious riffs that put a big smile on my face. I certainly don’t begrudge anyone who doesn’t like the new, evolving sound. But I think it’s great!

New Releases

No Family Secrets by Patsy Collins 
Find it on Amazon

Huntress Found by A. A. Chamberlynn
Book #1 of The Timekeeper's War series
Find it on Amazon

Piper Morgan to the Rescue by Stephanie Faris
Find it on Amazon

And visit her site for a great giveaway!

November 9, 2009

(Awesome image courtesy of my favorite Dragon buddy, Al! Nothing like a selfie with my best friend.)

That date marked seven years since I began blogging. A lot has changed since then. Blogging is different today. But I still wouldn’t be anywhere else or trade in the journey for anything.

What’s happened over those seven years?

Four books, one boxed set, five anthologies, and four audio books. (With a short story, audio book, and anthology still to come.)
The Insecure Writer’s Support Group blogging group in 2011, website and Facebook groups in 2013, two anthologies (soon to be three), newsletter, Twitter, t-shirt, and more.
Hosted or co-hosted twenty-five blogfests.
Participated in/co-hosted seven A to Z Challenges.
Was the subject of a blogfest! (That’s where Mini-Alex came from. Elise made him for the blogfest and then mailed him to me – from France! Deniz later supplied the stylish scarf.)
Lost some dear friends.
And made a world of amazing new friends.
Plus a whole lot more!

Thanks to all of you for joining me on this journey! I appreciate your friendship, support, and guidance. I couldn't have done it without you.

Did you catch Arrival this weekend? Seen The Big Short? In Flames fan? (Or any new music out you do like?) Picking up some new books? And what’s happened during your blogging journey?

I will be spending time with family next week for Thanksgiving and I have decided to unplug for the week. The whole week! I will be checking emails and returning comments when I return. Have a great Thanksgiving!


kaykuala said...

Seven years leading the crowd. No mean feat.Not enough with motivating blogs initiator, there are books galore anthologies audio books short stories and all heaped on your shoulders! Whew! Keep the good flag flying Alex.A grand following of faithfuls attests to it! Great!


kaykuala said...

1st time being 1st. Yay!


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I saw 'Arrival' with my husband yesterday. :) Mind-blowing is right...we sat in the theater with the credits running trying to figure out what we'd seen! Amazing. And the only movie I can think of where a linguist is the hero. :)

Enjoy your Thanksgiving! I'm taking next week off, too.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Alex - have a brilliant internet free time with your family and friends for Thanksgiving ... congratulations on all your achievements - and I count my blessings having tied in with this group of amazing bloggers and authors.

I did see the Big Short - it certainly exposed a few truths ... which we suspected and knew - but in a horribly enlightening way.

Happy Thanksgiving and here's to many more years of authoring and blogging ... cheers Hilary

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

I haven't had a chance to see "Arrival" yet, but I did read the story that it's based on. "Stories of Your Life" moved me even before I was a parent, and I'm sure it would mean more now. I'd really like to see this one!

Congrats to everyone with new releases!

Enjoy your Thanksgiving break!

Stephanie Faris said...

Thank you for including my doggy book in your list! I saw "The Arrival" mentioned on Facebook--someone said it was the best movie of the year. I wondered what it was at the I know!

Annalisa Crawford said...

Congratulations on your seven years! Your blog has become so important to so many writers and bloggers, myself included. I still remember the fear I had when I commented here for the first time - it was like trying to squeeze into the cool guy group :-)

Arrival looks good - a bit more than the aliens attack/world in peril scenario.

And also, congrats to the new releases this week :-)

Truedessa said...

Congratulations Alex - 7 years and you have accomplished so much. Seven is a significant number. Seven colors of the rainbow, 7 days in a week, 7 circles form the seed of life. Al did a wonderful job with the artwork. A dragon and ninja mystical friends.

I wanted to see Arrival this weekend, but it didn't happen. I will try and see it next weekend. The previews looked good and I like Jeremy Renner. Thanks for the review.

Enjoy your week, and the riffs of music that make you smile!

Mason Canyon said...

Alex, congratulations on your blog anniversary. Hard to believe it's been seven years. You provide support and inspiration for so many (me included), thanks for being an awesome blogging friend (and author). Wishing you and your family a safe and Happy Thanksgiving.

Congrats to everyone with a new release. The Arrival is definitely a movie I want to see.

Shady Del Knight said...

Hi, Alex!

Amy Adams has been one of my favorite actresses since Psycho Beach Party (2000). She's a beauty and I admire her versatility. If you say Arrival might be her greatest role then I am so there.

I didn't write that scathing review of Battles, but I don't like it very much when a metal band moves toward the mainstream. Nevertheless I would be willing to listen to the latest album by In Flames with open ears.

Happy Thanksgiving, good buddy!

Natalie Aguirre said...

I've been thinking of seeing Arrival and now I really want to since you liked it so much.

Congrats on 7 years of blogging. I've almost been blogging for 6 years. I'm like you. I still really see the value of it despite all the changes.

Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your time unplugged. I may too since I don't have post next week.

The Cynical Sailor said...

Wow, seven years of blogging! Very impressive. You're a wonderful role model for the blogging community - very inclusive and supportive of newer bloggers. Thanks for all that you do with the IWSG.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family. Cheers - Ellen

Al Diaz said...

Congratulations on your seven years! You've really achieved a lot. (BTW, the question says "five years") You also has given a lot to the blogging world and inspired many along the way. I'm very glad we met and I've learned several things from you too. Keep on going strong. Have an awesome Thanksgiving!

M.J. Fifield said...

I haven't seen Arrival, and honestly, it wasn't even on my Must Watch list, but I keep hearing how amazing it is, so perhaps it should be.

Congrats on seven years of blogging!

Enjoy your Thanksgiving break!

Dean K Miller said...

Enjoy the break and family time!
Arrival looks awesome.

John Wiswell said...

So many people I know are in love with The Arrival that I really must see it. Chiang is an incredible writer and it's exciting to think his work has begun to be adapted well to the screen.

And enjoy your break, man!

Karen Lange said...

Thanks for the reviews and great info. We can always count on you to keep us up to date. :) Enjoy your time away. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Jo said...

Sounds like Arrival is a must see. Also the Big Short.

You really have achieved a lot in your blogging years Alex, and you continue to do so. My best wishes for your blogiversary.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks Hank and you scored the top spot!

Elizabeth, my wife and I were in a daze when the film ended. Just amazing.

Hilary, horribly enlightened way is a good way to describe it.

Sandra, it will really get to you then.

Stephanie, you're welcome! Added about the giveaway - sorry, forgot.

Annalisa, thank you! And you are part of the cool group. Or maybe we're the geek group?

Truedessa, good point about the number seven.

Mason, thank you for being a great buddy!

Shady, you have to see it. And I think part of it is they are getting mellower with age. It's not really mainstream, just more accessible.

Natalie, it still matters.

Thanks, Ellen!

Thanks, Al! And crap, I'll fix that.

MJ and John, go see it!

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I had a note of Arrival, and now I really want to see it - thanks for the review!

Where would the blogging world be without YOU, Alex?! I don't even want to know. :o

Have a wonderful holiday - enjoy the time off!

Christine Rains said...

Congrats on seven years! Great movie reviews. I saw two this past week. Doctor Strange was a lot of fun, and Trolls... I didn't enjoy it, but my son did. Though he's more excited for Sing next month, and so am I. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Tony Laplume said...

Congrats on the anniversary. You rock!

Charles Gramlich said...

I'm hearing great things about arrival. Hope it lives up to the word of mouth.

Crystal Collier said...

Good for you planning to take the whole week off. You deserve it--but will you get twitchy fingers?

I'm stoked about The Arrival. Looking forward to date night (after my house guests have gone home).

Huge congrats to Patsy, Alexia, and Stephanie! I'm so excited for all three.

Pat Hatt said...

7 years is quite the haul indeed, congrats. Sure have a lot accomplished indeed. Arrival sure sounds like one to watch. Ugg to the stupid banks, but it was a god movie.

Tamara Narayan said...

Arrival does sound good. I did see The Big Short on Netflix and when I heard the real person was looking into water futures, it gave me chills.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving week and unplugging! Plus congrats on all the writing and blogging accomplishments over the years. Few bloggers reach this level of putting together an entire community.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

What an amazing and exciting seven years you've had. Here's to even more accomplishments in the future.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

stephen Hayes said...

We saw "Arrival" over the weekend and were impressed by its thoughtfulness. An excellent movie.

Arlee Bird said...

Arrival does look intriguing to me so I'll likely watch that one when it comes to DVD. You have a good Thanksgiving as well.

Arlee Bird
Wrote By Rote

Tonja Drecker said...

Congratulations on seven years! And very productive ones at that. Have a great Thanksgiving and enjoy the time with your family.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Madeline!

Christine, sorry you had to endure Trolls.

Thanks, Tony!

Crystal, hopefully those fingers do some writing instead.

Tamara, appreciate that.

Stephen, thoughtfulness is a good way to describe it.

H. R. Sinclair said...

What?! Thanksgiving is next week! Holy Moly! :) Congrats on the keeping up with the blogging. I started up and found your blog right around when you started--crazy right?

Happy Turkey Day!

Stacy McKitrick said...

Unplugging for a whole week? Sounds kind of wonderful. Might do that in January. Got a goal I'm hoping to achieve this year and don't want to mess that up. I've been blogging since Thanksgiving 2009, so started just about the same time as you. During those 7 years I managed to get 5 books published (which actually happened in the last 3 years). Enjoy your "vacation"! :)

Sandra Cox said...

Hmm, haven't heard about Arrival. Sounds like a good movie. Thanks for the heads up.

Heather M. Gardner said...

I'm so glad to be celebrating your achievements with you, Alex!


Thank you for all your advice, comments, reviews, recommendations, sharing, and snark!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!


Michelle Gregory said...

wow! 7 years. congrats. i guess that means mine has been around for a while too.

Joanne said...

congrats on your blog world and Ninja to all. Awesome
I really liked Arrival. My husband was confused and when I explained the twist he went "ohhhhhh". Thumbs up.
The Big Short was superb and yes, it's a movie that should make you laugh and yet be appalled at the same time
Congrats to all new books and authors. Hard to believe that turkey is around the corner. Gobble gobble. Have a great week or so

Nilanjana Bose said...

Seven years of amazing Ninja blogging - congrats! And thank you for all you do!

Have a wonderful break.

Chrys Fey said...

CONGRATULATIONS on seven awesome years of blogging! I think you've done more than any of us. :)

Chemist Ken said...

Amazing how much can be accomplished when you just approach things one day at a time. Congrats, Alex.

Glad to hear Arrival was good. Will try to see it next weekend.

SpacerGuy said...

Happy Thanksgiving Alex. I never knew Al was your fave Dragon Buddie. The Arrival movie looks like a real winner. I saw the The Big Short and figured, yeah I can do that! but the stock exchange? no way! Thanks for being our Ninja Blogger and Chief and enjoy the week.

alexia said...

I was originally leery of Arrival because I feel like alien invasions are super overdone right now, but it's really getting a lot of buzz and compliments. I do love some Jeremy Renner :)

Thanks for giving a SO to Huntress!! You rock, per usual :)

Suzanne Furness said...

Congratulations on seven years of blogging, you have achieved so much and no doubt seen many changes in that time. Enjoy your internet free week, I think unplugging for a while is great for the soul.

Fundy Blue said...

You enjoy that well-deserved unplugged time, Alex! Family is important. "The Arrival" sounds fantastic. I hope to see it. Likewise "The Big Short." Although I'm sure that movie would make me furious. Congrats on all you have accomplished in your blogging history ~ It's inspirational! Have a good one!

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Alex. Hope it's a restful week off. Thanks for the movie reviews and for all the work you've done for IWSG. Congratulations to all the new published authors. said...

Good for you to go unplugged for an entire week. Have a great week and Thanksgiving, Alex. Love to you and yours.

Unknown said...

So many good movies to catch up on! Recently watched Dr. Strange and was blown away!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Congrats on the blog anniversary. I can't imagine not having my blogging friends around. You're accomplished a lot in seven years.
I heard arrival didn't have a big opening. It sounds very interesting.

cleemckenzie said...

You've done a fabulous job, Alex. I admire you for all the supportive and interesting posts as well as the wonderful IWSG. I know many are grateful along with me.

erica and christy said...

Congratulations to you! You're amazing and you give so much to the blogging world. Thanks for that! Amy Adams? You sold me on Arrival. Christy

A Beer for the Shower said...

There are a lot of good movies I need to go see. And yes, The Big Short was fantastic. Really well done... even if it is frustrating, to see what these people did to us in the name of greed.

And hey, happy bloggoversary! I know we certainly couldn't imagine a life without blog friends, you most definitely included. Here's to many more successful years to come!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Holly, and I'm glad you found me.

Stacy, we've come a long way.

Heather, thank you!

Michelle, it has.

Chrys, not more, just a lot.

Alexia, not really an alien invasion film at all.

Susan, which is a shame.

Thanks, everyone!!

Cherie Reich said...

Arrival looks awesome! Have a great Thanksgiving!

Andrew Leon said...

The Arrival is another of those movies that I probably won't make it to the theater to see. :/

Elephant's Child said...

I am so glad that someone with your supportive, encouraging nature found blogging. And works so hard to make it a better place for everyone.
Congratulations (as always) and gratitude to everyone with new releases.
Enjoy Thanksgiving.

Cathrina Constantine said...

I did watch The Big Short. Excellent Movie. I saw Al Diaz's rendition of the two of you on Facebook. Pretty awesome.

Wow!! You've been blogging for 7 years!!! Amazing! And you've accomplished great things for the blogging and writer's community!!!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

You have made such a positive impact on the blogverse in those 7 years, Alex! My Stetson's off to you for sure. ARRIVAL is on my To Be Seen list now. And THE BIG SHORT I'll see just on your recommendation. I have studied the history of our nation more intently these past years in research for my novels, and my heart has only become heavier over the uncaring callousness of those in power in all the different sectors of our country. :-(

farawayeyes said...

Seven years, YIKES! Congrats, it couldn't happen to a better guy.

That Arrival movie looks interesting, just don't know if I'll have time to fit it in, so many good looking flicks coming out.

I too, enjoyed 'The Big Short', even if it was a real 'blood boiler'. Excellent ending where the voice over tells us they all went to jail and comes back with 'just kidding'. Yeah, 'just kidding' indeed.

Lots of new releases by some lovely people. Congrats to them also.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thank you, Elephant's Child!

Cathrine, can hardly believe it's been seven years. And Al did such an awesome job.

Thanks, Roland. And sad, isn't it?

Mark said...

Thanks for the info on Arrival:) Also, have a great Thanksgiving:)

Anonymous said...

Happy belated blog anniversary!

J E Oneil said...

Wow, seven years? Your blog is school age now. I can't wait to see Arrival. It looks like one of the best movies all year. Have a good Thanksgiving! See you the week after :)

Susan Kane said...

We planned to see Arrival this wkend, but didn't happen. Now will make sure to see it.

Jemi Fraser said...

You've accomplished a LOT! Enjoy your down time - sounds like fun.
Arrival wouldn't be hubby's type of movie, but I'll catch it once it's in DVD form :)

Carrie-Anne said...

Congratulations on your blogiversary! I think just about everyone grows, evolves, develops, matures, and changes over the course of many years of blogging or vlogging. It's fun to look back on the earliest posts or videos and marvel at how much either we or the other person has changed. For me, a big thing is definitely learning to get my average blog post down to around 400-800 words, instead of routinely having an average of 1,500, or regularly having several thousand words per post!

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Arrival hasn't arrived in Oz yet--at least I don't think it has. I'm looking forward to it.

Shannon Lawrence said...

I haven't seen Arrival yet, but did see The Big Short. I expected it to be boring, but it was fascinating and horrifying all at the same time.

DMS said...

I am planning on getting to the movies at least once before Christmas. Was thinking of Arrival, but was on the fence (wasn't sure how scary it was going to be). But- this sounds like a fascinating movie and I definitely don't want to miss it. Thanks for sharing.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

JE, you will be impressed.

Carrie-Anne, shorter is better.

Lynda, you will appreciate it.

Jess, it's not scary - it's a thinking movie.

Liz A. said...

Have a great Thanksgiving.

I actually did go and see Arrival on Saturday. Interesting movie.

Congrats on seven years as a blogger.

Magic Love Crow said...

Thanks for coming by my blog to say hello, from Sandra's blog! Have a great Thanksgiving! Amazing reviews! Thank you!

Mary Aalgaard said...

You've piqued my interest for Arrival. I might take the boys to that one.
Happy Thanksgiving!

L.G. Keltner said...

I'm super excited to see Arrival! I hope I get the chance soon.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Pat Tillett said...

Thanks for your review on Arrival. I REALLY want to see it now.
Thanks Alex!

mail4rosey said...

I like the movies you want to watch again to see what you missed. Inception was the last movie like that for me. It's been awhile.

Robin said...

I love your movie reviews even though I seldom (read: never) go to the movies. But, I really want to see both of these (Arrival and The Big Short). So...

Anyway, sorry to be such a stranger.

Can you tell I haven't been feeling well... again??? Dratted migraines.

J Lenni Dorner said...

I have heard good things about the Arrival movie. Not many details, but good reviews.
Love the Dragon and the Ninja! That’s awesome.
Seven years? That’s impressive. Way to go!
Have a great Thanksgiving, Ninja Captain Alex.

dolorah said...

Have a good week off :)

Nicola said...

Congratulations on all your achievements! I'm so happy to have found the IWSG and all the amazing people who are part of it. And I am grateful for all the amazing people I've had the pleasure of meeting due to IWSG contacts. Now that is something to be thankful for - it's a pity Thanksgiving isn't a part of our traditions. Maybe I'll join in anyway :) Have a super Thanksgiving Alex!

Great post and I can't wait to see Arrival!! Congrats to all those with new releases!

Patsy said...

Thanks so much for mentioning my book, Alex!

Murees Dupè said...

Congratulations on your seven years of blogging! You truly are the Ninja. You have done so much, especially to help most of your fellow bloggers, you should be very proud of yourself.

I read an article that mentioned that The Arrival was one of the most difficult movies to make. Something about it being hard to adapt the book into a screenplay. It's been getting great reviews everywhere. Definitely looking forward to watching it.

Congrats to everyone with new releases! Take care, Alex.

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Thanks for the review! I'd like to see Arrival, and I bet my husband would, too.

Jennifer Lane said...

I still haven't seen The Big Short but The Arrival sounds great! Love those actors.

You've accomplished so much. Congratulations!

And congrats to Stephanie as well.

Sandra Cox said...

I don't know about watching The Big Short. That subject is so infuriating, I'd just get upset all over again.
You have a good one.

Tyrean Martinson said...

In seven years, you've re-shaped blogging to fit your style, Alex. Your attitude about blogging - making friends, encouraging others - has helped me be a better blogger and writer. IWSG is awesome. My husband and I love your books. I appreciate all you've done these last seven years, Alex.
Congratulations on everything!

I'm a week behind in movies (and sometimes months). My family and I just saw Dr. Strange - I loved his cloak, and so much of the world-building was breathtaking - both in storyline and visual affects. My two favorite movies on Netflix I've watched recently are: Zootopia and True Memoirs of an International Assassin.

Happy Thanksgiving, Alex!!!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

Only 7 years to achieve total blogosphere domination? Pretty good.

I liked the Big Short. I'll have to see Arrival.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Mary, be sure to take your brain.

Robin, I'm sorry.

Nicola, that's good to hear! That's why I started the IWSG.

Patsy, you're welcome!

Murees, thank you. I've never read the book, but they did an amazing job with the film.

Sandra, it will make you mad.

Thank you, Tyrean! The cape in Doctor Strange was funny.

Jeffrey Scott said...

Happy 7th. Wow! That's a lot of achievements. But I'm glad I found your blog and have been able to share in a few of these ventures with you. A-Z in particular and the IWSG.
I ended up thinking of you last night at the movie house. I was just settling in to watch Doctor Who on the big screen when I saw a commercial for RiffTraxx. A few with me had no idea what it was so I was able to inform them what it was and how I believe it's on Amazon Prime, so we may all get together to watch an episode or two.

H.R. Bennett said...

Wow! Go Alex. I suddenly feel like a novice. :P

Unknown said...

I want to see the first movie!!

Please visit my Blog!

Alessa Bernal.

The Angry Lurker said...

Loved your review of Arrival!

Hart Johnson said...

I am putting both movies on my list. I've been interested anyway, but this was a good reminder. And Happy Bloggiversary! You've accomplished so much! Well done!

Julie Flanders said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Alex!! And congratulations on 7 amazing years of blogging. You have accomplished so much!!

Sandra Cox said...

Congrats to our great writers with new releases!

Anonymous said...

Really found THE BIG SHORT fascinating. It was an eye-opener. Also, looking forward to the Amy Adams film. Glad to hear it's theatre-worthy.

Congrats on 5 years and all of your success! Time sure does fly.

Loni Townsend said...

Wow. Seven years. Woot!

I enjoy a few bands who change over the years too. I've never been a big fan of metal, but I can understand your sentiments. Arrival sounds really good, though not one I'd probably want to watch with my kids in the room. Kids are way too distracting.

Tonja said...

Seven years?! That's a big chunk of time. Happy blogoversary. The awesome thing about you is that I feel like you are a friend even though we haven't met.

And it doesn't matter that I've been gone for a year or two or three - only popping in every now and then. You are always here. You may be what's holding the blogosphere together - this community of writers for sure. (I have a feeling someone else has written this already - I did not read the other 100 comments.)

And the Amy Adams movie looks amazing.

Sherry Ellis said...

Wow! Seven years of blogging. Congratulations!

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Congrats on being a blogger for so many years. I agree with what you said about Arrival. What an interesting concept and boy, I would not have the necessary brain power to read that alien language. I would have been like...a...what? I haven't seen the Big Short, but I plan on doing it soon.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Congrats on seven years Alex and glad to have you as a blogging buddy. Arrival is out today in Jamaica and I'll see it when I can. Your review of The Big Short makes me finally want to watch it. Have a great Thanksgiving.

Donna McDine said...

Happy 7th Anniversary! I've never hear of In Flames... need to check it out.

Toi Thomas said...

Haven't seen Arrival yet. Looks interesting.
I'm not up on new music at the moment; been swimming in my vinyl collection.
Enjoy your time with family.

Shell Flower said...

Congrats on so many years in blogging and your achievements since then. It really is an impressive list, yet you stay humble and are always positive even in bad reviews. Loved The Big Short, BTW. I'm adding Arrival to my list. said...

Now I'm curious about Arrival. Going to add it to my watch list. Have a Happy Thanksgiving, Alex!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Jeffrey, glad I could help educate you on RiffTrax! You guys should watch one on Amazon Prime. You'll all be hooked.

Loni, all things should change and evolve, including bands.

Tonja, I appreciate you saying that.

Thanks, everyone!

Ray Rousell said...

Congrats on your 7th BlogBirthday Alex!!!

Rachna Chhabria said...

I want to see Arrival after reading your review (I trust your opinion on movies). Congratulations on seven years of blogging. Happy Thanksgiving, Alex.

Sandra Cox said...

Love the day of the Ninja selfie:)

Sandra Cox said...

PS Enjoy your week and have a great Thanksgiving.

Rhonda Albom said...

Arrival looks like an interesting movie. I hope it shows locally soon.

Tess Julia said...

I can't wait to watch Arrival! Amy Adams is one of my favorite actresses. I haven't seen the Big Short but I've watched a lot of documentaries about the subject, and it is outrageous. Unfortunately, the world is driven by insatiable greed, so I don't think things will change. As far as your blog and what you've done over the past five years- you have inspired many people, myself included, and given me the strength to keep writing.

Juneta key said...

Congrats Alex, and thanks for you do and contribute. You really are awesome in your loyality and dedication to this group and the things you accomplish. Peace out!
Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

LD Masterson said...

Seven awesome years! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family. I'm feeling the need to make time for a movie.

Elizabeth said...

I love your movie reviews. You have a way of making some movies (like today's two) sound intriguing that I would not normally consider watching. You should ask for commission ;)

Happy blogging anniversary and congrats on seven years!

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you enjoy your blogging break, you deserve it!

Melissa Sugar said...

Congrats on seven years and all of your many accomplishments. You've always made me feel so welcome and you've been such an inspiration to me. Enjoy Thanksgiving with your family

Trisha said...

I saw the Arrival and I liked the less "Hollywood action" take on a visit from aliens.

I don't understand why people want a band to make the same album over and over again. For instance, Opeth has definitely changed their sound over the progress of their albums, but that doesn't mean they've got worse.

You mentioned Lacuna Coil in your comment to me, and they're another band that has had a new sound with every album. Some of them haven't appealed to me as much, but the most recent album blew my mind! Just goes to show they have definitely not "lost it".

Leslie S. Rose said...

I'm so jazzed Arrival is a thumbs up! And thank you, Alex, for all the gold you've sprinkled over the blogosphere and publishing for the last seven years.

Michelle Wallace said...

Congrats on 7 years of blogging, Alex!
I can remember the first time I commented on your blog. I was TERRIFIED...(thinking to myself, what on earth will he think of your lack of sci-fi knowledge and non-movie attendance??)
And then when you asked me to join the IWSG admin team, I was super-terrified...and speechless!

Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your unplugged family time!

Cindy said...

Arrival sounds great. You sure have done a lot over the last 5 years. Your blog is always my stop to see what's going on in the Scifi world.

Anonymous said...

Good for you for unplugging for the entire week! Happy Thanksgiving!

I have The Big Short bookmarked to watch but haven't gotten around to it yet. I have been binge-watching Shameless when I have time. What a show that is. Have you seen it? It has quite a bit of sex in it, but the plot (at least from a addict sense) is fantastic.

I want to see Arrival. I've heard some very mixed reviews on it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sandra, same to you!

Thanks, Tess!

LD, go to the movies!

Elizabeth, maybe I will...

Trisha, I'll have to check out their latest then. I appreciate a band that evolves over time.

Michelle! Silly. You've been an excellent friend and addition to the team.

Elsie, haven't seen that one.

Thanks everybody!

Unknown said...

I ca't wait to see Arrival. I've heard nothing but good about it. And now you've made me want to see The Big Short, too, though like you it'll probably tick me off.

Huge congrats to Patsy, Alexia, and Stephanie on their new releases!

I love Al's image! And huge congrats on 7 years blogging and all your wonderful productivity and successes! You're an inspiration! :)

Blue Grumpster said...

You're so right. Arrival (minus Charlie Sheen) is for the brain. Well, it's for brains that are more than just a pretty fa... um brain. It's The Fifth Wave (the sixth?) but for people who don't mind a bit of hard work. There.... we agree, Ninja. It is not a miracle.

nashvillecats2 said...

Sorry for my lateness Alex.
I've been blogging for nine years, started whilst still in Spain.
It seems incredible that we've followed each other for seven years, not only follwed but you have supported me through some pretty harsh times for which I thank you.

Nick Wilford said...

Congrats! What a great list of achievements over seven years. It's certainly been fruitful. Hope you have a wonderful week off.

Arrival sounds like it could be something special. I'm not familiar with the work of In Flames, but I certainly appreciate bands who grow and try different things. That's what we should all be doing as artists!

Stephen Tremp said...

A selfie of you taking a selfie with Father Dragon. Awesome!

I loved The Big Short as I was in the banking / finance industry at the time. A lot of people saw this coming. Working schmucks like myself who worked behind the scenes and saw the mind boggling number of garbage loans (if you needed a bridge loan for example you can't afford it). I remember telling anyone who would listen get out of debt and stop taking out second and third mortgages on your house. Of course no one listened. So yeah, great movie IMHO.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Arrival was very thoughtful and brilliantly-made and it made me think. Deep. The Big Short is a fine movie too, but those financial terms caused me a headache. Lol.

Sandra Cox said...

Happy 7 year anniversary, Alex. Lots of great accomplishments.
Once again, hope you and your wife have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Al Penwasser said...

I really want to see "Arrival." Maybe it will be our Christmas movie. But, I predict it will be overruled by "Rogue One." Just guessing.

DL Kennedy said...

Okay, that settles it. I've got to see The Arrival.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Lexa!

Blue, we had to agree sometime.

Yvonne, it's been a great seven years knowing you.

Nick, exactly!

Stephen, you saw it coming.

George, those financial terms about ruined us.

Sandra, same to you!

Al, you're probably right.

DL, go!

Have a great Thanksgiving everyone!

Mason T. Matchak said...

Congratulations on seven years, man. That's awesome. ^_^ I'm constantly glad I found IWSG, both for the community and the therapeutic aspects, so many thanks to you for coming up with that.

I've heard really good things about Arrival, but it's one of those things where I'm not quite interested enough to go out and see it. I'm sure I'll catch it eventually, though. As for music, my favorite bands are the ones who change over time but still maintain what makes them special, so... I have no idea. O_o

Unknown said...

I love Amy Adams so I will have to check out Arrival! And I'm SO excited for Stephanie! <3 have an awesome Thanksgiving, Alex!

The Happy Whisk said...

I unplug daily. It's the best. Here's to you enjoying your quiet time.

mshatch said...

Enjoy your unplugged time. I'm hoping to see The Arrival this Friday...really looking forward to it.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Hey, just wanted to add, Happy Thanksgiving!

Rek Sesh said...

Seven years. Wow! And you've probably accomplished much more than you planned - book releases and all.

Arrival arrives here in December, so I will be watching it with my nephews. I just hope this isn't 3D too. Becoming jaded with the string of 3D movies releasing here or I am just a grouchy, middle-aged woman who can't stand the glitz and noise. :(

Loved Fantastic beasts. Doc Strange was entertaining with great CGI, but somehow had a Martin Sue feel to it. For one, I truly, truly hated those repeated close ups of hand-washing.

Ah, but the responsibilities that come from being Cumberbatch!

Yeah, I miss those wonderful old days of blogging. Friends like you, Robyn, Pat Michelle and TS helped me avoid falling into the depression zone again. I think of you folks often, but I don't know if I'll ever revive the blog.

Life has changed a lot in these two years and I've kinda lost my passion for fiction writing. Maybe, I'll give it another shot in New Year with byte-sized book reviews, or simply lurk around and comment now and then.

Enjoy your digital-free Thanksgiving with family and friends. And, no, you don't have to save a slice of turkey for me -- the advantages of having a vegetarian friend.

P.S. Can't express what your little message meant to me. It's delightful to be remembered and missed! :)

Yolanda Renée said...

Wishing you a great Thanksgiving!
Family is where it's at - enjoy yours!

Love the movie reviews, looking forward to both of them!

Blogging - I'm still struggling, but you have it down to a science! Congratulations!

Jean Katherine Baldridge said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

Jean :)

Blue Grumpster said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Alex!


Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Arrival sounds like a movie I would like to see.

Hope your Thanksgiving week has been and will be wonderful. Thank you for all you do following and helping writers throughout the year!!!

Lidy said...

Don't know where I've been but I just heard about the movie Arrival on the radio today. Sounds interesting. Happy 7th in blogging and hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

Sandra Cox said...

Oops, I called it an anthology instead of a horror movie guide.

Deniz Bevan said...

Seven years already! Congratulations on all you've achieved!

J.H. Moncrieff said...

Congrats on your blogging anniversary!

Since I started blogging, everything has changed. I got published. I quit my day job. I fought in the ring. So many milestones met, and so many left to go!

I can't thank you enough for starting the IWSG, and for the support you've always shown me and other writers. You're one in a million.