Sunday, April 29, 2007

The Mighty Quinn

As I predicted, Brady Quinn did go to the Cleveland Browns, but not quite when he was expected to. You probably know by now that Quinn didn't get picked at number 3. Instead the Browns took offensive tackle Joe Thomas. After that move, many expected the Vikings to take Quinn and when they didn't, the folks in Miami thought that a gift had fallen into their lap. Of course, Miami then decided not to take Quinn and everyone was shocked. Including most Dolphin fans.

After the Dolphins passed on Quinn, the next 12 teams or so didn't have a need for a quarterback, so he was going to have to sit for a while before he got picked. I was bracing for a whole lot of reaction shots after every single pick. Then something happened. The new commissioner, Roger Goodell, invited Quinn back to a private suite where he wouldn't have to deal with the press in his face until he finally got picked. In the past, the players who unexpectedly dropped in the draft had to sweat it out right in front of the cameras while the analysts did their best to sustain the humiliation for the player.

This year, Kornheiser and Mark May did their best to try to run Brady down (even before the Draft started) but were thwarted by this clever and sympathetic move by Goodell. A very good move on his part that I suspect will continue in the rest of the drafts under his command. Good work so far, Goodell.

Anyway, back to Quinn. In all, I think this situation probably worked out for the best for Brady. He's got a new stud offensive lineman to protect him and he gets to play for his favorite team. Plus, he can use the fact that he slipped so far as motivation to tear up the NFL. Not that a real pro needs any more motivation to be the best player he can, but it sounds good. In the end, he handled it well and we probably learned more about him from this experience than most scouts learned about him at the combine and any of the pro days.

Go Brady. When it all begins to fall apart for the Colts (which will probably be soon) I'll mildly root for Quinn and the Browns. You know, like how I used to mildly root for the 49ers when Montana was in charge.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Draft

Tomorrow is the NFL Draft. Unless you've been living in a cave, I'm sure you know that. For the last few years, the draft hasn't been very exciting for me since the Colts haven't been picking early and the Irish haven't had many players going in the early rounds. This year is a different story.

The Colts are picking at the very end of the first round since they are the SUPER BOWL CHAMPS, but former Irish quarterback Brady Quinn is projected to go as high as three. The Cleveland Browns have the third pick in the draft and seem to be a good fit for Mr. Quinn. He's from Ohio and is a Browns fan, they need a QB and the Browns' head coach, Romeo Crennel, worked with Charlie Weis when they were both winning all kinds of Super Bowls with the Patriots. Unfortunately, I would hate to see Brady go to the Browns. I hate the Browns. I've always hated the Browns and I think their uniforms are the ugliest in the league because their colors are orange and brown. Plus, they're a pretty bad team right now and he'll probably get knocked around quite a bit. This means that he'll probably struggle at first and he'll look bad doing it.

For Brady's sake, I hope he goes third because that means he'll make a ton of money. For my sake I hope he plays for the Irish again next year.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Jack Black

Dee and I are sitting here watching the TiVo-ed American Idol results show. They've got Ryan Seacrest and Ellen DeGeneres tag-teaming the hosting duties in two different venues. There have also been a bunch of lame bands and performances. Then Jack Black showed up.

Jack Black did his thing where he jumped around the stage and sang a Seal song and did his whole School of Rock thing. Then the judges judged him and Seal even critiqued him. However, the whole time he never really gave up the focus and kept it all about him. It was funny, but it reminded me oddly of Robin Williams. Is this where Jack Black is going?

Jack Black is the new Robin Williams.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Jerkology Rehearsal

As I mentioned in my previous post, we had another rehearsal for Jerkology last night. Everyone was there and dressed in their Jerkology gear - polos with popped collars - and we took some promotional photos. The photos were pretty hilarious and they'll look even better once Jason is able to work his design magic on them.

I added two new sketches to the show last week, so we spent most of the rehearsal going over those. They are both longer scenes with three and four cast members in them. The first reads went very smoothly. In one scene, Jason and Tristan play two little kids and they did a great job playing it up without being too corny but still having a lot of fun with it. I think people will get a kick out of seeing them play kids alone. In the other scene, Aaron plays a famous television personality and really does a great job with it. I'll need to do a little more research for that scene so I know exactly how to light it, but I think it will really get a great reaction.

We also did some work on Jason and Marty's two person scene about adoption. I was unsure how the scene was going to work, so we tried it a couple of different ways last night. I had originally written it to be a lights-up, lights-down series of short scenes. After seeing that, we decided that it was unclear if Jason and Marty were having the same conversation over and over or if it was different versions of the same conversation. We talked about it a little bit and ended up making it one long scene - which actually suits the subject matter much better.

We ended the rehearsal on a high note by running one of Marty's solo scenes. He freaking nailed it. He had us all rolling to the point where Aaron could hardly say his out line at the end. Fantastic. And to think that I almost cut this scene before we started rehearsing.

We've now run through all of the "scene" scenes a few times. Now we just need to work on getting off-book on those and memorizing the monologues. If rehearsals keep going like this, I think we'll be just fine.

Monday, April 23, 2007

All Stars

After Jerkology rehearsal tonight, I was taking the Red Line train back home and there were some Cubs fans on the train who had decided to leave the game a little early. The one Cub fan sitting in front of me was holding an All-Star ballot, looking through the names and punching out the holes for the players he wanted to vote for.

Okay, so this guy is already placing his votes for the All-Star game and most teams have only played around 20 games. Really? This is how the voting works? Twenty games into the season and people are casting votes for this? That's awesome. We're getting a real accurate picture of how these players will perform this season from the first 20 games.

I hate baseball.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

pHreedom Idol

Last night we did our second pHreedom Idol show of the season. We managed to work out most of the kinks from the last show and this one went very well. Once again, the performances were hilarious - especially Cynthia, who played a cancer-riddled child from the Make-a-Wish Foundation. We had our regular judges and Alaina (as Tiffany - that's right, that Tiffany) was killing me. I had trouble keeping a straight face.

Dee came and brought a large group of friends so we had a good sized crowd and they were into it - which always helps the performers. You should come check it out next week.

Friday, April 20, 2007

The White Sox

I write about baseball more than I should given that the game completely bores me. However, I have been quite impressed by this season's advertising campaign for the Chicago White Sox. They've done some pretty clever and visually striking ads on the trains and buses here in Chicago that I quite enjoy. My favorite bit of marketing they've done is the TSSCBOT. I can't do it justice, you'll just have to click the link and see for yourself. Don't worry, it's work safe.

This whole marketing campaign almost makes me want to watch a Sox game. Then I remember that baseball is boring.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Stacy Ferguson

That's right, I called her Stacy. I'll tell you why. Because someone needs to put her in her place. She's getting a little too full of herself. Sure, she's an attractive lady and she's had some success with the Black Eyed Peas. She's even had success in her solo career. However, the only thing she's ever written a song about is herself. Or should I say Fergie. "Fergalicious", "My Humps", "London Bridge", and now her new song, "Big Girls Don't Cry."

They always tell you to write about what you know and Fergie is obviously doing that. At some point you need to move on, though. You know, branch out - write about other things. Not Fergie. She just keeps writing songs about herself. One can only infer that Fergie loves her some Stacy Ferguson. It's time to move past the 4th grade, Stacy.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Idiot Box

Before TiVo I didn't watch a whole lot of TV. Even when I did watch TV, I couldn't really commit to seeing the same show every week because my schedule was so crazy. Now that I have TiVo, I can just set it to grab the shows I want and catch them when I have time. But you already know how TiVo works.

My point is that I couldn't be happier that I never have to miss an episode of House. Gregory House is the jerk that we all want to be. However, he's a jerk with a purpose. He's not mean just to be mean. His philosophy works for him and he's able to save patients' lives because of it. The other characters on the show may not like his ways - you may not like his ways - but he does everything for a reason and that earns everyone's respect. I would watch this character buying groceries.

If you haven't seen this show, check it out. It's on Fox on Tuesday nights and it's all over the place in syndication. You won't be sorry.

Another Rehearsal

Last night we had another rehearsal for Jerkology (I'm now making that the official title). This time we had the full cast even though I expected Tristan to be absent due to a prior commitment. However, she got out of her commitment earlier than expected and was able to make it over in time for us to have a full cast.

We started off by teaching Aaron the dance. He picked it up very quickly and the rest of the cast remembered it and pretty much had it down. I was impressed. They all looked pretty good. We got a chance to run most of the three-person scenes and they are all looking really good. I think they'll really hit their stride once they are off-book and don't have to rely on the scripts. It will allow for more movement within the scene that will only add to the funny. Jason had some really good ideas for one scene that will amp up the funny. We also threw around some good ideas for props that will help the scenes as well.

All in all, I was very happy with how everything went last night. There is still progress to be made, but I think that it's well on its way to being a funny show.

Next time, I hope to have finished Aaron's monologue and have the music cues figured out for the opening and closing scenes. Plus, I have to finish writing a song that I think will be a lot of fun. If I get these things done this week, I think we'll have plenty of time to get them rehearsed and set. Due to some scheduling confusion on my part, it looks like we'll get two more weeks of rehearsal.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Boring

Some days I'm just boring. Today is one of those days. I had a pretty productive and eventful weekend but I'm not inspired to write about it. Instead I'm stuck sitting here trying to think of something interesting to write about. I've got nothing.

Check back tomorrow. Maybe I'll be interesting again.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Threats and Insults

Recently there has been a huge uproar in "The Blogosphere" about a certain blogger who received death threats from posters on her blog. To those people who threatened her with death I say, "Not cool." However, it did get me thinking about threats.

I can honestly say that I've never received a death threat in my life. Well, that's not entirely true. During a high school football game as I lined up over center, the middle linebacker looked at me and said, "I'm going to kill you." However, I'm pretty sure that was only an intimidation tactic because saying, "I am about to attempt to sack you" isn't nearly as effective. ANYWAY, the point is that I've never received a major threat to my well being. I certainly don't feel cheated by that fact, because dealing with a death threat can't be any fun - unless it's all part of the game.



It's hard to avoid the whole Don Imus vs. the Rutgers women's basketball team thing since it's pretty much the number one story going right now. Therefore, I'll assume you're informed. Throughout this whole mess, the Rutgers women's basketball team has been at the top of the headlines like no women's basketball team ever - and they've never even won a National Championship. What about Tennessee? Those ladies won the 2007 National Championship and the team that they beat gets all the headlines. Not only that, but they get that press for being insulted. Once again, a women's basketball team is getting major press for being insulted. Really? Women's basketball is probably the one sport that is insulted more than any other in the media. Take a look at any one of Bill Simmons's columns. Rutgers is getting press for something that happens every day in the media.

I'm not defending Don Imus. I don't even know or listen to Don Imus. These past few weeks are the most relevant he's been since I can remember. Screw Don Imus. He's a blowhard, but so is Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Howard Stern, Bill O'Reilly and any number of other media assholes that make a living out of saying shocking things. When will these people get fired?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Thank You, Kurt

Novelist - and fellow Indiana native - Kurt Vonnegut died last night at the age of 84. A quick look at my bookshelves will reveal that I am a big fan of Mr. Vonnegut's work. In his honor, I will offer up any of the books in my Vonnegut collection for loan to anyone who might be interested. Simply send me an IM (AOL) at the name of this blog and we can work out the details.

Thank you, Kurt. You will be missed.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Goodies for My Mac

This summer, I bought a brand-new MacBook Pro and I couldn't be happier with it. It runs like a horse and lets me do everything that I need to do and it does it fast and well. On top of the fact that it is a great machine, it also looks really cool. Mind you, that wasn't the deciding factor but it is certainly the icing on the cake.

Once I got my new MacBook Pro, there was a bit of an adjustment period while I figured out where everything is and exactly how to access in the most efficient fashion. The hardest thing for me to get used to was the single button mouse, but that was pretty minor. I was also a little confused about how to actually install a program after I had downloaded it. It turns out that it was so much easier than installing something on a Windows machine that I kept thinking that there had to be more to it. Basically, you just drag it to the Applications folder. That's it.

Here are a few quick Mac to Windows conversion equations in case you are thinking of switching or are a recent switcher struggling with some of these issues:

Finder = Windows Explorer
Macintosh HD = My Computer
System Preferences = Control Panel
The Dock = Start Button (mostly)
Trash = Recycle Bin

However, most of the above is moot once you download a few nifty little programs that can make your Mac life much, much easier. I've collected a few of my favorites and I'll share them with you now.

1) Quicksilver
This is the best application I've ever downloaded - Mac or PC. At first glance, this little app seems to be a launcher, but it can do so much more. Quicksilver scours your computer and looks for everything that you might possibly use and remembers it (creates an index). When you invoke Quicksilver (the default keystroke is Ctrl+Space) it pops up in the middle of the screen waiting for your command (See image at right). All you have to do is begin typing the name of the application or file you wish to open. Once Quicksilver has found what you want, you simply hit Enter to open it up. Pretty nifty, but that just scratches the surface.

By installing a few plug-ins (which is as simple as clicking a check box in the Quicksilver's preferences, you can do things like manage your iTunes Playlists, append text to a file, attach a document to an email and find and move multiple files at once. Those are just the things that I have actually done so far. There is so much more that can be done.

The major drawback to Quicksilver is that there isn't any real documentation on how to use it on the web site, but luckily there is a large and enthusiastic user community that is willing to help. Plus, I've found a few good tutorials here, here, here, and here - courtesy of Lifehacker.com - a fantastic site with all sorts of good info.

If you have a Mac, I can't recommend Quicksilver enough.

2) Adium
Adium is an instant messaging program that allows you to connect to all of your IM accounts (AOL, Yahoo, GTalk, MSN, Jabber, ICQ, and more) through one interface (much like Trillian for Windows). It works like a charm and I never have trouble connecting or with it dropping my connection. Plus, it will keep all of your conversations in one window separated via tabs that you can quickly switch between by using Apple+Right or Left Arrow.

Adium's logo is a green duck (you can change its color) and it will sit quietly in your dock until you receive an instant message. Like all of the icons in the Dock, it will bounce when a message is received (the duck flaps its wings as it bounces) and if you have the sounds enabled, it will also quack at you. Dee hates the quack noises so I have those disabled.

There are also many advanced features for those of you who like to tinker. You can create fingerprints in case you need to chat privately with another user and it easily allows file transfers and access to message histories.


3) VirtueDesktops
VirtueDesktops is a nifty little application that helps me keep my open applications organized. It allows you to create several virtual desktops at once. What is a virtual desktop? Imagine that you had four different monitors hooked up to one computer and you could put anything you want on each of those desktops on the monitors. Now imagine that those four desktops are on the same monitor and you can switch between them with the touch of a few buttons. That's VirtueDesktops.

The brilliance of VirtueDesktops is that it lets you keep applications separate from one another so you don't have to clutter up one space with everything you've got open. I tend to keep Firefox (my browser) and Adium on one desktop, documents and spreadsheets on another and iTunes on a third. I also have a fourth desktop that I use for other tasks such as photo, video or music editing.

I'd provide a screen grab from my computer, but it just looks like my desktop. However, there is a cool transition effect that makes people go, "Oooh" when you switch between desktops. It basically makes it look like all your desktops are on a big cube that swivels when you switch. Of course, it has other transitions you can use as well that are equally as cool. Aside from using a keystroke to switch between screens, you can also set it to switch when you wave your hand over the keyboard or when you whack the side of the screen. Cool effects, but not very practical.

Unfortunately, it looks like VirtueDesktops will soon become obsolete when Apple rolls out its new operating system. This new OS will have a desktop virtualization tool built in. Until then, VirtueDesktops is your app.

By the way, all of these applications are free. You can download them today.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Atta Boy, Hank

I stumbled across this article on SI.com today. Hank Aaron - the current all-time home run leader in MLB - has basically said that he won't be anywhere near the ballpark when Barry Bonds breaks his home run record. The best part is that he's not doing it as some sort of protest against the steroids thing, but because he doesn't want to deal with that kind of shit anymore. He just wants to be "at peace with himself". I think my favorite quote is towards the end of the article when he says, "I'm 72 years old, I'm not hopping on a plane and flying all the way to San Francisco for anybody."

The Home Run King doesn't bow to anyone.

Monday, April 09, 2007

First Sketch Rehearsal

I just returned from the first full rehearsal for my sketch show (tentatively titled, Jerkology). Unfortunately, we didn't get off to the start I'd hoped for as only three of the four cast members showed up. Because there are only four people, it's really hard for one person to be gone. We did get to run some scenes but had others fill in for the missing person.

The highlight of the rehearsal was Dee joining us to teach us a dance - I won't tell you what the dance is, you'll have to come see the show. The cast caught on pretty quickly and they were practicing a few of the moves throughout the rehearsal. I think it will turn out really well.

I didn't have many notes for them because they played everything pretty well. I think we'll get an even better idea of how these scenes will play out once everyone is off-book (industry term for not reading off the script).

Hopefully, we'll have everyone next week.

Changes...

As you can see, I've made some changes to the blog. I've gone with a simpler (some will say more boring) template and made some changes to font and color. Frankly, the old, lime green version was starting to annoy me (I'm sure it had been annoying most of you for some time). If you know me at all, you know that I like things clean and simple. This is about as clean and simple as you get.

Ed. Note: I do realize that there may be a number of you who will never see these changes since you only read this through your RSS reader. In that case, enjoy this looking exactly like it always has. -JF (4/9/07 - 1:05 pm CDT)

I didn't quite steal the McSweeney's site template, but it's pretty close. However, this site is definitely reminiscent of their published material what with all of their thin borders and such. On that note, I definitely recommend subscribing to McSweeney's Quarterly Concern if you are the kind of person who is always looking for something new and different to read. I've been a subscriber for almost a year now and have received and enjoyed issues #20, #21 and #22. Issue #22 has been especially enlightening as it features a section on the Oulipians - of which I knew nothing about. However, the stories have been very interesting.

I'll write more about McSweeney's in the future and maybe even write a few reviews on the issues.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Spoof

Last night I performed in the opening show of the new season of pHreedom pHalls. This season we are spoofing American Idol with our show pHreedom Idol. I played the Simon character. My name is Atari and I am German and I offer up my special little nuggets of advice to all of the contestants.

We had a pretty good crowd for the show last night and they seemed to really enjoy what we had for them. Each of the performers chose actual songs and sang to the karaoke versions. A few of the songs we heard last night: "None of your Business" by Salt and Pepa, "Walk This Way" by Aerosmith, "She's a Lady" by Tom Jones, "It's My Life" by Jon Bon Jovi, "Part of their World" from the Disney movie "The Little Mermaid" and "Let's Talk About Sex" also by Salt and Pepa. The performances were hilarious and it was all I could do to keep from cracking up. Luckily, the three judges sit in the audience and aren't really watched during the performances. The judges were also very funny as Chris - who plays the Randy character (as J-Rome) and Cynthia played the Paula character (as Inka). There were several times when I had to compose myself while they were giving their "notes" to the performers. Not to toot my own horn, but I had a couple of funny little nuggets as well.

pHreedom pHalls is a show that I haven't enjoyed doing in the past and it has its own special set of trappings that make it hard for the show to succeed during the normal seasons where we spoof a genre. However, this season looks as if it will be very successful as we are spoofing something very specific and everyone knows their role.

Of course, the show last night had its issues as well. Since this is the first show of the season there were some awkward moments as the host (played by the always hilarious Aaron) was trying to feel his way through the show. The judges went a little long at times as well, and there was a lot of pausing throughout the show in general. We also discovered that we had a few too many performers as the show ran for about an hour and a half. However, all of these things are correctable and I think that we'll have them cleared up by next week so that the show will be honed down to it's funniest, most concise point.

In the end, I'm having fun again with this show and look forward to the next five episodes of this season which will be great if last night is any indication.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

It's Too Cold

This is exactly what I'm talking about.  If an offensive lineman was wearing long sleeves under his jersey in this kind of weather, he gets made fun of by the other players.  Suck it up.
 
On the same topic, Tim is backing me up here with this Carlin clip.
 

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Sketch Show Update

As you may know, I've written a sketch show which we are now beginning to rehearse. Last night, we did a read-through of the script that I have so far. It went pretty well. Hearing the cast put their characters behind the writing was great. Some of the sketches I was most unsure of turned out to be much better out loud and some of them I was most confident in weren't quite as funny on first read as I had hoped. However, I think that everything we read is definitely viable for the show.

I got some good feedback from the cast on some ideas to make the show even better and we discussed the opening and closing scenes - which have yet to be written. I'm still working with Dee to get the opening scene together. Once I have that, I'll be able to finish the closing scene and I'll have a complete show.

Our first full rehearsal is next Monday.

Baseball Season

Do you know what I hate? Baseball. America's sport? My ass. The most popular sport in America is football. For obvious reasons. What? The reasons aren't obvious to you? I'll list a few.

1) In football, each game is meaningful.
In the NFL, every game counts. One loss can make the difference between being in the playoffs and watching them. In college football, the games mean even more. You almost always have to go undefeated to win the National Championship. In Major League Baseball you can suffer through 10 or 12 game losing streaks and still make the playoffs or win a championship. Day-to-day in MLB there is nothing at stake. Why would I bother to tune in?

2) Baseball is boring.
For the majority of every single baseball game there are only three people directly involved with the play - the pitcher, catcher and hitter. Even when the ball is put in play, there is usually only one or two more players involved in making the play. The most action you'll ever see on the field is is a 6-4-3 double play. In football, all 11 guys are involved in making every play. A breakdown in one assignment breaks the play. Not to mention the fact that huge men slamming into one another is always more impressive then seven guys standing around waiting for something to happen.

3) You don't have to be athletic to play baseball.
John Kruk. David Wells. Kirby Puckett. Hand-eye coordination will do just fine, thank you. Just like golf.

4) If it gets a little rainy, they stop playing.
Rain, sleet, snow, wind? The game goes on if it's on the gridiron. Remember this year's Super Bowl? If it rains like that during game seven of the World Series all you get to see is a lot of tarps and dugout shots. Suck it up, fellas.

I could go on and on, but I won't. Regardless, I don't cherish Opening Day like most guys (and girls) in America. In fact, I hate it because it means that any stories about America's Real Game (read: football) will be buried on the back pages of the websites I visit. That's way too many clicks for me.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Fecal Cab

I just arrived home after taking a cab ride from work. Don't worry, I wasn't working all this time. I went out for dinner and a few drinks with some people from work to celebrate the successful completion of a project. I managed to flag down a cab after leaving the restaurant and immediately upon sitting down and telling him where I needed to go I caught a huge whiff of feces. Originally, I thought that I might have farted and then realized that I hadn't had time to fart. I quickly searched around the cab for piles of feces. Upon discovering zero piles of feces, I determined that the cab driver must have shit himself. I opened the windows in the back and pretended not to hear him when he asked me to roll them up. The cool, fresh Chicago air was refreshing. It made the ride tolerable.

That was my fecal cab ride.

This is what you get when I try to post something every day.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Movies...

Dee and I just returned from seeing 300 at the IMAX Theater on Navy Pier. I had wanted to see the movie from the time I saw the first previews, however it never occurred to me that I should go see it at the IMAX theater until a friend's friend recommended it to me. Today, I got online and got us tickets.

I expected this movie to be pure entertainment and it delivered. Much like Sin City before this, 300 was visually stunning. I was a little worried at the beginning that the movie might take some time to get to the actual fighting, but they cut right to the good stuff. I was impressed at the movie's ability to get you to understand the Spartan mindset within the opening few minutes. Once you understood, you then believed that the Spartan way was the only way - right along with the soldiers. I was also surprised at the number of boobies we got to see. I'm not talking about the man boobies. Lady boob was plentiful.

Anyway, I'm probably not going to offer anything you can't read in a review anywhere else other than to say that I enjoyed it. However, I have heard talk that this movie carries certain political overtones in relation to the war in Iraq. I think that's complete bullshit. If you want to attach political significance to this movie, then you're going to find a way to do it. This movie does nothing that any other movie in the war movie genre has ever done. The good guys fight for freedom and the bad guys fight to take away that freedom. The only difference between this war movie and any other is that it was released during the Iraq war.

I liked it and recommend you go see it. For the record, Dee liked it, too. She thought she wouldn't.

Dee and I also recently went to see Reign Over Me starring Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle. Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle are both dentists who roomed together in dental school. They are both living in New York and have lost touch since school. In the meantime, Sandler's character's family has been killed in the 9/11 attacks (they were on one of the planes) and he falls into a deep depression. Cheadle's character sees him on the streets and eventually is able to befriend him. However, Sandler barely remembers him because he's been trying to forget everything since his family died. For such heavy subject matter, this movie has lot of laughs. The laughs aren't the forced, look-at-me-I'm-funny type of laughs that Sandler usually goes for. He's much more subtle in this film and Cheadle has some hilarious moments as well.

Both Sandler and Cheadle are great in this film. They are both extremely believable and real and there is only one time when I was pulled out of the film by one of Sandler's outbursts that sounded like Happy Gilmore. Cheadle does a great job making his character unique and likable has good chemistry with his wife, played by Jada Pinkett Smith. Reign Over Me is both touching and funny and gives Adam Sandler a chance to finally finish what he started with Punch Drunk Love.

There was one thing that kept popping into my head throughout the entire movie: "Man, Adam Sandler looks an awful lot like Bob Dylan."

If Bob Dylan dies soon (God forbid), I nominate Adam Sandler to play Dylan in the movie that will surely be titled "Tambourine Man."

Oh yeah, Dee liked this one, too. She really liked it, in fact.