Reign Over Me
Sony Pictures // R // $38.96 // October 9, 2007
Review by Matthew Hinkley | posted October 6, 2007
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Graphical Version
The Movie:

I wanted to see "Reign Over Me" really badly when it was playing in theaters. I love Adam Sandler, and don't care what role he plays...and what people say about him...I like his movies. I'm even one of those people who enjoyed "Punch Drunk Love." I've been eagerly awaiting another serious role from Sandler and it definitely came!

Charlie Fineman (Sandler) has has nothing to live for. His wife, kids and dog died in 9-11 and since then, he has completely shut out every memory from his life. Alan Johnson (Don Cheadle) randomly stumbles into Charlie one day and immediately recognizes him. Johnson and Fineman were roommates in college and haven't talked for years. Johnson soon realizes it is going to be much harder then he expected to get to know Fineman, because he is very defensive about protecting his memories of what life used to be like. Johnson and Fineman begin a weird friendship as they play video games, eat chinese, make some music, and watch movies...and carefully tiptoe around what Charlie doesn't want to remember. Johnson wants more then anything to get to know Charlie again, and focuses all his energy on getting him to open up....which causes him to neglect his own wife and family. Johnson and Fineman ultimately have to both learn that change is not always easy, and what is most important is keeping your friends and family close.

Both Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle do an incredible job in their roles. Sandler steps out of his boundaries and into some really big shoes. His character Fineman is mentally unstable, and has suffered an extraordinary loss. Sandler completes his role perfectly, and becomes someone we never expected him to be. Cheadle has obviously proven himself in these type of roles before. His character is lost in his work and the daily routines of his life. He no longer has "fun" and is in dire need to find something that can be his own. Cheadle and Sandler really feel like they get along, and it really translates to the screen.

"Reign Over Me" is an incredible film. I absolutely loved watching the interaction between Sandler and Cheadle as they brought their characters together, and formed a unique bond. "Reign Over Me" is a film about friendship, family, and what is most important in life. It is a refreshing look at an awful event that caused a lot of pain, but shows us that there is life again after such suffering.



Here we get a fairly above average video transfer. The outdoor scenes during the day are fantastic. They have great detail, good colors, and everything seems to pop nicely. During some of the darker scenes the blacks are very nice, the detail remains fairly strong, but at times becomes very inconsistent. Detail at times can be lost in the darker scenes, and since the film takes place mainly at night, we do tend to lose detail more often then I would like. There is grain present at times, and sometimes there is a little too much contrast. The skin tones are actually really good, and overall the video quality is good, enjoyable, and not too distracting.


Here we get a 5.1 PCM Uncompressed track and a 5.1 Dolby Digital track. Here the dialogue is spot on, and remains even throughout the film. The soundtrack is a perfect fit and creates emotion wonderfully. The surrounds are very nice with cars driving in the background, and all the sounds of the city filling the room. I was very pleasantly surprised by the audio track, although mainly dialogue, the surrounds are filled with sounds that are not too distracting, but immerse us into the film even better.


Behind the Reign: Director Mike Binder walks us through "Reign," the history, who the characters are/were and what "Reign" is all about...friendship.

Jam Session with Adam Sandler & Don Cheadle: Just like it sounds, an actual jam session with the two of them.

A Still Reign: Here we get a photo gallery put to music. Yep that's it...a slideshow!

Final Thoughts:

"Reign Over Me" is a film that is filled with emotion. I loved sitting and watching the journey that Johnson and Fineman go through together as they build their friendship. Everything about "Reign" makes me want to go back and watch it again. The audio and video are good, not perfect, but nice. I can easily Recommend this one.

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