Based on a true story and an English language remake of the French film, The Intouchables, The Upside is by director Neil Burger and stars Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston.
The film went through a lot to finally make it to our screens. It was supposed to be distributed by the Weinstein Company in 2018 but was put on the back burner and eventually bought by Lantern Entertainment.
It was a wise move, as The Upside grossed $122 million worldwide on a budget of just $37.5 million.
So what is it all about, and is it worth watching?
What Is The Upside About?
The story is a simple one. Dell Scott (Kevin Hart) has been released from prison and is on parole. He needs to prove he is looking for work or he will violate it and go back to jail.
Struggling to find a job, he heads to an interview for a janitor's position. He just needs a signature to show that he turned up to keep his parole officer happy.
What he doesn't realise is that he has walked in on a set of interviews for a life auxiliary caregiver. The person who needs the care is a wealthy man named Philip Lacasse.
Following a paragliding accident that also killed his wife, Philip is a quadriplegic who only has movement from the neck up.
Despite having no qualifications, and much to the frustration of Philip's business manager Yvonne (Nicole Kidman), Philip hires Dell.
Yvonne gives Dell a three-strikes rule, knowing full well that he will fail. But Dell realizes that he is at a crossroads in life and knows he needs to step for his son (Jahi Di'Allo Winston) and his ex-girlfriend.
And so begins the unlikely friendship between Philip and Dell, one that will change both of their lives forever.
The Upside Official Trailer
Is The Upside Worth Watching?
The Upside is a great film that is funny and poignant and brilliantly acted. Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart's chemistry is top-notch, and their onscreen relationship is so heartfelt that you could easily keep watching them long after the film has ended.
The thing about The Upside is that before you watch it, you have a fairly good idea of how it will play out.
A very rich man hires an unemployed man with a criminal record, and they both end up better off for the experience.
So it's predictable, which isn't a bad thing. But if you're hoping for a few surprises or a couple of twists, you won't find it here.
What you get is a comedic look at the very different struggles of two men who, in normal circumstances, would never even cross paths. And I'm here for it!
So if you want heartwarming fun radiating with positivity, then The Upside should be top of your list of movies to watch next.
Plus, it was good to see Kevin Hart stretch as an actor, and dare I say it, maybe he should go after these types of roles more often.
Is The Upside A True Story?
Yes, The Upside was inspired by the lives of Abdel Sallou and Philippe Pozzo di Borgo.
The real life Philippe is the son of the French duke Pozzo di Borgo and the Marquis de Vogue. He was the director of Pommery (a champagne house) and, prior to that, was a manager at Moët and Chandon.
He became a diabetic quadriplegic in 1993 following a paragliding accident, after which he hired his Algerian attendant, Abdel Sellou.
His memoir, A Second Wind, was then turned into a 2003 documentary called, A la vie, à la mort.
That was then adapted for the French film The Intouchables (2011), as well as the Indian film remake Oopiri (2016), the Argentine Inseparables (2016), and The Upside (2017).
Is The Upside On Netflix?
No, The Upside is not on Netflix. It is an Amazon Prime Video exclusive, so if you are a subscriber, you can watch it on that streaming platform.
The Upside Movie Cast
Kevin Hart as Dell Scott, an ex-convict who is hired as a full-time caregiver and also a big fan of Aretha Franklin
Bryan Cranston as Phillip Lacasse, a wealthy quadriplegic who hires Dell
Nicole Kidman (Big Little Lies) as Yvonne Pendleton, Philip's PA
Golshifteh Farahani as Maggie, Philip's Physical Therapist
Aja Naomi King as Latrice, Dell's ex-wife
Tate Donovan as Carter, Philip's stuck-up neighbor
Jahi Di'Allo Winston as Anthony Scott, Dell's son
Genevieve Angelson as Jenny Lacasse, Philip's late wife
Suzanne Savoy as Charlotte, Philip's cook
Julianna Margulies as Lily Foley, Philip's penpal love interest
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