The movie Reign Over Me (2007) starring Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle, is one of the most profound movies I have seen in a long time. It deals with heartbreaking loss, loneliness, family and friendship.
My favorite thing about this film is its message that thinking you know what is best for a person and pushing them to deal with their problems does not work. It only alienates them. It only adds to their pain, and does not bring about the desired result of healing and wholeness. Reign Over Me shows that it is only unconditional and non-judgmental love and friendship that can bring true change in a suffering persons life. The moment Adam Sandler’s character is loved he begins to open up, but the moment he feels threatened or pressure to “get better” from someone he shuts down.
This theme of the movie is punctuated powerfully by The Who’s song “Reign O’er Me” performed by Pearl Jam. Eddie Vedder’s scream of the chorus “Love reign o’er me!” cuts right through to the heart. It is the cry of all sufferers because love is the only thing that can bring relief.