I’ll be honest: I’m not a fan of the optics of a Lonely, Rich White Man™ and his Wise, Poor Black Servant™ Learning From Each Other™. It’s been done to death and, at a moment in time where Hollywood is struggling to turn a corner on the issue of representation, this thing could very well fall flat on its face (and perhaps should). On top of that, could they not find an actor who actually has a physical challenge to play the rich guy? Plus that January release date – a cinematic grave marker – does not inspire confidence.
But, it does star the great Bryan Cranston, and Kevin Hart is the rare comedian who can wrench an involuntary laugh from me more often than not. That these two titans are sharing the screen is literally the only reason any of us are talking about this one, at all.
Cranston and Hart try to make stereotypes palatable when The Upside lands on January 11.