This weekend was projected to be in the dominance of DC's AQUAMAN as it swam past one billion at the worldwide box office. And while the film did make headlines with its current totals outmatching the entire run of the 2008 THE DARK KNIGHT, the domestic box office ultimately fell into the hands of Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston's THE UPSIDE, which pulled some impressive opening night numbers to leap ahead of AQUAMAN. The success of the film can most likely be attributed to the combined star power of Kevin Hart, Bryan Cranston, and Nicole Kidman who stars in a supporting role. However, even though AQUAMAN and THE UPSIDE had multiple much-needed victories, the rest of the box office couldn't find their groove, resulting in some disastrous flops from A DOG'S WAY HOME and REPLICAS.
As mentioned before, the prize debut of the weekend was THE UPSIDE. Despite the film being mauled by rough critics with a currently standing 39% on Rotten Tomatoes and Hart's widespread Oscar hosting drama, audiences still rallied to the support of its star-studded cast, including Hart. And audiences did more than just buy a ticket. According to its CinemaScore grade of an "A," it proves that audiences were beaming with the comedy, despite the industry controversy around it. Even though it will probably fall drastically in its preceding weekend thanks to the upcoming blockbuster release of GLASS, this is a fantastic win for Hart and company and one that should solidify his popularity with audiences nationwide. THE UPSIDE is playing in theaters now.
(This portion is taken from the previous published HBB Reviews article "Box Office Report (January 11-13): THE UPSIDE Claims #1, AQUAMAN Swims Past 1 Billion Worldwide," the full article of which can be found here).