Reign Over Me

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Let In the Unexpected


One of Adam Sandler's first forays into a serious drama. Reign Over Me is a 2007 melodrama about two old friends who fell out of touch and are re-united in post-9/11 New York City.

Alan Johnson (Don Cheadle), a dentist, is on his way home from work when he spots his old college roommate, Charlie Fineman (Sandler), leaving a hardware store. Two weeks later, Alan runs into Charlie again, and this time insists on catching up over a cup of coffee. The two eventually become friends again, but Charlie aggressively distances himself from Alan anytime the issue of Charlie's family comes up. It is revealed that Charlie lost his wife and daughters in the September 11 attacks as they were on American Airlines Flight 11, and that he has been having great difficulty coping with the loss.


This film provides examples of:

  • Berserk Button: For most of the film, the idea of people forcing to see a shrink sets Charlie into a rage.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Charlie is like this for most of the film.
  • Jerkass: Charlie's in-law's lawyer. The presiding judge even orders him at one point to "shut up." Granted, this was in the privacy of judge's chambers.
  • Pac-Man Fever: Averted. Charlie can be seen playing Shadow of the Colossus and he plays it convincingly, and if you watch carefully, he's defeating the colossi in order.
    • Then again, he calls it Shadows of the Colossus.
  • What The Hell Lawyer: The judge has this reaction to the in-laws' lawyer in his chambers after witnessing him place a picture of Charlie's dead family on the table in front of him during his "Love, Reign O'er Me" freak-out.