Movie Review – Adam Sandler Shines in Reign Over Me

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I am not one for comedy often, yet I have seen Adam Sandler in quite a few films because I like the guy. Yet never have I seen him shine, as I saw him light up the screen in this highly emotive film Reign over Me. Not once have I ever seen such a powerful performance by Adam, it’s a film that will make you laugh, cry and be filled with joy. Let me share some things with you.

The blurb on the back on the DVD I hired says of Adam, ‘Adam Sandler is simply remarkable.”

The description on the back of the DVD reads:

“Five years after losing his wife and children in the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Charlie Fineman (Sandler), a once successful dentist who has now retreated from his life, unexpectedly bumps into his old college roommate Alan Johnson ( Don Cheadle) on a Manhattan street corner. Alan, who is dealing with issues in his own family life, is shocked to see the change in his formerly gregarious friend.

Their re-kindled relationship becomes a life-line for the two men, who are both in need of a trusted friend, and their chance encounter soon becomes a life-long friendship where both are enriched and enlightened.”

As a person that has written two 400 page novels and three two hour movies, I am a person that likes many elements of a film or a book. I especially enjoy a dramatic film that can have me cry, have me scared, have me happy and take me through a rollercoaster of emotion. Reign over Me, thanks to Adams powerful portrayal of Charlie delivers in every single detail that I like about a well written film

As a writer there is always a struggle to get the balance between fine character development and the story moving forward. Both elements need to be there in an exceptional film, however if you spend to much time building a character the story can suffer, and if you put to much emphasis on the story rather then proper character development then the film will simply not resonate as strongly with the audience. As a writer, I could not have written a better screenplay and as an editor of scripts, I can see that this script went through an extensive polishing to make it work so well. You may see out of 560 articles that I have written, that I have written very few film reviews. Simply put, not many films inspire me enough to sit down and spend a half an hour of my time to recommend the film on paper. This film is outstanding and well worth spending money to buy it.

As a writer, like most writers I enjoy story and drama. I especially like to see and engaging story with that blend of fine character development and the essential conflict and tension that is needed to move a story forward. The film delivers on all the points that I like. I heard once that and extraordinary film can only be produced by an exceptional script. Not even the finest actors can bring a hopeless script to a great film. If given a good script, a fine actor and a good director can weave even a greater dimension to the story, better then the writer can even imagine is possible.

Yes, Adam may have made you laugh you head off at times, yet in this performance I had to switch the DVD off and have a good cry. To be frank, I prefer a film to make me cry and even weep, rather then make me laugh. That is just me, it might not be you. I would not say that I am the best writer in the world but for 25 years I have been watching at least one film at the movies every two weeks. It is said that Hollywood is presented with more then 20,000 fresh scripts each year, and on average only about 3 to 4 films get released in Australia each week. This means that out of the 20,000 only 2000 at the most make it to the big screen each year. If only one tenth of the films get made and there is so much garbage that gets made, it makes me wonder how bad the 18,000 were that didn’t make the cut.

This film might be one of the best films that you have seen this year. It certainly had me impressed enough to write about it and give it 4.5 stars out of 5. If you hire it and do not like it, feel free to email me and I may send you a refund.


It is a highly emotional film and could be disturbing to some people who have lost loved ones.

I hope you can see the film. If you like Adam and have not seen this film, I think this performance was a stand out performance in his career. Though I have not seen every film he has been in, I don’t think any actor in the world could have done a better job of this film then Adam did.

Added to the mix was the pretty face and fine acting of Liv Tyler as a therapist.

write by Philomena

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