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The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

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‘Upgraded’ offers refreshing take on classic trope

“Upgraded” combines sweet romance with an engaging plot to be a bingable rom-com.

Dishonesty is a trope that is found intertwined in the plot of many beloved rom-coms. From Andie Anderson in “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” to Joe in “You’ve Got Mail,” the relationships are built on a lie, which leads to the inevitable conflict and then resolution. “Upgraded,” starring Camilla Mendes and Archie Renaux, is no exception from this, the movie being a take on the classic “fake it ‘till you make it” trope.  

“Upgraded,” released on Feb. 9 and streaming on Prime Video, is a sweet and refreshing romantic comedy that combines an engaging and entertaining plot with a swoon-worthy romance. 

The movie begins like this: struggling auction house intern Ana comes by a stroke of luck when her boss promotes her to third assistant for a trip to the London office, and in a second stroke of luck she gets upgraded to first class. In the lounge, she not-so-gracefully spills her bloody mary over William, who ends up being her seatmate. The two start up a flirty conversation, which leads to the lie that will kickstart the plot: William believes that Ana is the director of her auction house, but really she’s just an assistant.

A good rom-com has been hard to come by in recent years.  Often, they follow an overused formula that makes them seem like copies of each other. While “Upgraded” does stick to the classic rom-com formula — meet-cute, build up, conflict and happily ever after — it does so in a way that offers a fresh perspective to the genre. Ana is an ambitious intern who has goals to own a gallery, so the movie follows her career as well as the romance, which makes the plot feel deeper and more meaningful. 

While the movie does not reach the same level as its “fake it till you make it” trope predecessors, it does elicit the same feeling of a 2000s and 2010s rom-com: cheesy, yet lovable and swoon-worthy. Through montages of Ana and William going on romantic dates in London and falling for each other at lavish parties, the couple’s connection is clear even through the screen. 

William is a sweet and lovable main character. While he does not have as much of a background plot as Ana, he is still a well developed and interesting protagonist. In their first meeting, he says, “Chance moments can change the course of your life.” This sweet line encompasses the movie’s charming and heartfelt message as well as  the themes of fate and chance.

“Upgraded” is the perfect movie for anyone looking for an unserious and light rom-com that will offer an exciting and fresh take on the genre, starring a couple that is worth rooting for. 

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About the Contributor
Caroline Skelly
Caroline Skelly, Reporter
Caroline Skelly is a member of the Class of 2027 and she began journalism in the 2023-24 school year as a ninth grader. Aside from writing for the Midway, Caroline enjoys reading, baking and playing lacrosse.

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