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One of the first films to examine the aftermath of post- 9/11 New York City,Reign Over Meshows how much even indirect contact with those who lost loved ones in the tragedy can greatly affect. Like rings of debris spiraling out from an explosion, Charlie Fineman's (Adam Sandler) loss also devastates his in-laws, who he refuses to speak to, and ex-college roommate, Alan Johnson.Reign Over Mestars Johnson, a successful dentist with a gorgeous wife, Janeane (Jada Pinkett Smith) and two kids, who finds Charlie reverted back into a teenage wasteland, unable to face his unbearable sadness. Sandler as Charlie looks like Bob Dylan and acts like Dustin Hoffman in his great dramatic performance. Listening to The Who and The Boss through headphones, playing video games, and continually remodeling his kitchen, Fineman's escapism disturbs Johnson, who, in turn, feels squelched by his stiflingly normal lifestyle. As the two reacquaint, Johnson is the only person who can help save Fineman from self-obliteration. The story analyzes Post Traumatic Stress with some accuracy, though excess sentimentality undermines emotional scenes. Survivor's guilt, assessing mental illness, and absolute incapacitation due to grief are all topics covered within the bounds of the enduring friendship forged between these two men. Ultimately,Reign Over Me'smessage is one of compassion, as a reminder to treat victims of loss with patience and care. But interestingly, it also pays heed to smaller human tribulations, which are obstacles to healing when left untreated. --Trinie Dalton

Stills from Reign Over Me (click for larger image)




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CastDon Cheadle, Liv Tyler, Donald Sutherland, Jada Pinkett Smith, Adam Sandler
DirectorMike Binder
DVD Release Date:  October 9, 2007
Runtime:  124 minutes
Studio:  Sony Pictures
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review by . March 24, 2011
Pros: Sandler & Cheadle, good script     Cons: none for me     The Bottom Line:   "On the dry and dusty road,  The nights we spend apart alone.    I can't sleep and I lay and I think,  The night is hot and black as ink."  ~The Who     Death does not come with a scorecard.  There is no book or checklist where you can tick things off, then move on to the next item.  …
review by . April 02, 2009
The other night, I got hooked into the movie "Reign Over Me" starring Don Cheadle and Adam Sandler.  When it first came out, I was very interested in seeing it, but then it was gone from the theaters before I had the chance.    The movie was worth the wait, but I wish I'd seen it sooner.    Basically Adam Sandler plays a character who was the college roommate for 2 years of Don Cheadle's character.  Sandler's character pretty much experienced …
review by . October 12, 2007
posted in Movie Hype
While dramas reenacting the devastation of 911 abound, only a few select films appear to be dealing with the personal, long-term effects of that day of doom. REIGN OVER ME, with a brilliant script by Mike Bender (who also directs and acts in the film), reaches into the arena of emotional states that continue to filter through the detritus of that event, states that have altered many minds permanently and states that have provided pathways for growing into a more profound appreciation for life and …
Reign Over Me (Full Screen) (2007)
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