Reviewer grade: C+
Writer/director Mike Binder’s “Reign Over Me” is a bittersweet dramedy chronicling the efforts of a vaguely unhappy New York City dentist (Don Cheadle) to help heal a newly re-met college roommate (Adam Sandler) whose life has been devastated: His wife, three daughters and family dog all died in a 9/11 plane. Both actors provide sporadically moving performances, but the film falters under the burden of awkward and unnecessary subplots.
Still, it has its moments of moving male bonding, emotionally rich facing of life’s random cruelty, and coming to gratitude for life’s pleasures even if they are shadowed by its sadness. This is a good film to watch in the cocoon of your own home, perhaps, where you can look around in gratitude for what you have and find solace in the film’s message that with support, the human spirit is, ultimately, capable of bearing even the seemingly unbearable. R
“ Kathryn JensonWhite