Tom Cruise in 'Knight & Day'Have the stakes ever been this high for a movie that's not even likely to open in first or second place on the box office chart?

To hear some pundits tell it, Tom Cruise's very career as an action star may be riding on the relative success of 'Knight and Day,' even though it stands little chance of beating either last week's champ, 'Toy Story 3,' or even fellow newcomer 'Grown Ups,' starring Adam Sandler and his 'Saturday Night Live' posse. About the best 'Knight' can expect is to finish a dignified third.

Even that prospect seems iffy, however. The romantic action-comedy, which co-stars Cameron Diaz, had weak advance buzz, and though that buzz improved with last weekend's sneak previews, the reviews have been middling. The movie opened Wednesday to get a jump on the weekend competition, but its opening day pulled in just $3.8 million from about 3,100 screens.