Camila Mendes and Marisa Tomei star in this charmingly lighthearted film that pays homage to classics like “The Devil Wears Prada.”
This film reimagines the genre’s classic tropes, complete with misunderstandings, snobby assistants, and eccentric clients. So strap in and prepare for an adventure full of laughter, love, and a few artistic surprises along the way. “Upgraded” may not have changed the romantic comedy genre, but it knows how to entertain.
Mendes is Ana Santos, a recent master’s degree holder in art history who works for Tomei’s company, Dupont. Ana is promoted from trainee to third assistant after impressing her at an auction, and she is given the opportunity to relocate to London for an important auction.
On the flight over, she is upgraded to first class, where she meets a charming Brit named Will (Archie Renaux). Some misunderstandings occur, and Ana suddenly becomes the best assistant in town.
The film is a cross between Netflix’s Love at First Sight and Amazon’s The Other Zoey, in which a plane meet-cute leads to a lie about your identity. Renaux, ironically, played a minor role in The Other Zoey.
Returning to Upgraded, the film is less of a romance than the previous films and more of a light retelling of The Devil Wears Prada, minus the amazing wardrobe.
The film’s mishmash of storylines makes sense, given that the screenplay was written by a few writers (Christine Lenig, Justin Matthews, and Luke Spencer Roberts). Upgraded is more enjoyable when the focus is on Ana and her career.
The snobby assistants, the condescending Dupont, and the rest of the eccentric clients in the art world are all entertaining.
Ana effortlessly solves all work problems, even in a foreign country, thanks to her connections with Will and his famous mother, Catherine (Lena Olin). Even though the plots are clichéd and recycled, it is nice to see the underdog triumph.
Mendes is another reason why, despite its familiarity, the feature film does not feel stale. The Riverdale star gives Ana likeability and keeps her head up even when she is down. She and Dupont, played by Tomei, are the film’s two most interesting characters.
Aside from the accent, Renaux’s will is rather ordinary. I can not even recall what he did for a living in the film.
Lena Olin, Anthony Head, Saoirse-Monica Jackson, and Rachel Matthews add to the film’s comedic elements, but they are not Emily Blunt and Stanley Tucci from The Devil Wears Prada.
Upgraded is a pleasant watch that lasts one hour and 44 minutes. If you are looking for romance, this is not the movie for you.
In the first half of Love at First Sight, the romance is palpable, and the leads spend far more time together. Mendes and Tomei, on the other hand, keep the journey interesting by sparring with each other.