A drama made with good intentions, Reign Over Me is a somewhat uneven result that swings back and forth between an emotionally resonant look at grief and a feel-good story that hits all the beats you expect. The choice to use 9/11 as a catalyst for Charlie Fineman's grief seems tacked on, and never goes anywhere that really necessitates using it as a plot point; fortunately, director Mike Binder never takes this story anywhere that allows for any outright disrespect towards the event. The scenes that land really hit hard, namely the scenes in which Adam Sandler's performance takes over. They say comedians' tendency to draw from past memories make them perfect for dramatic performances, and Sandler completely reinforces that idea. In one of his most grounded and raw performances, Sandler finds a passion that we never seem to get from his comedic works: scenes in which he gets angry feel real, and one particular monologue in which he finally reminisces about his past is absolutely heartbreaking. He works well alongside Don Cheadle, who is great as always, and even steals the show from him in some scenes; knowing Cheadle's prestige, that's no easy feat. Sandler's performance is essentially enough to keep this one afloat when the story starts to lose focus and drift into saccharine territory.