Thursday, October 18, 2012

Reign Over Me (2007) [R] ****

For most of us the tragic events of 9/11 have a certain vagueness or abstraction. If we were not flying, and we weren’t within a hundred miles of New York City, Washington, D.C. or the rural crash site of the United Flight 93, we probably were not personally affected by the tragedy. If we were distant enough we might not even know anyone who was personally affected. Because this was a human tragedy, though, we can feel it acutely by sharing in another person’s tragedy. Charlie Fineman (Adam Sandler) is one such person. He lost his wife and three daughters in one moment when their flight from Boston to L.A. crashed into the World Trade Center. Now, several years later, Charlie has learned to cope. He lives alone in his apartment, endlessly remodeling his kitchen, building a record collection, playing an addictive videogame, avoiding all contact with his dead wife’s parents, a victim of post traumatic stress syndrome.

Then one day Alan Johnson (Don Cheadle) Charlie’s old friend and roommate from dental school sees Charlie shuffling along the street. Alan is approaching a mid-life passage, is living beside his wife and daughters, rather than with them, and sees in Charlie an opportunity, almost like a hobby. The story of how Alan and Charlie reconnect, and how Charlie emerges slowly and painfully from his cocoon into the real world of New York City, is a remarkable one, and it gives us all a painfully real and intimate feeling of what every 9/11 survivor must have felt and must still feel. Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle give incredible performances. 

Label: drama

Internet Movie Database
Metacritic 61/100
RottenTomatoes Averages (critics=63, viewers=74)

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