‘Upgraded,’ by actress-turned-director Carlson Young, introduces us to Ana, who begins working under a perfectionist fashion designer, Claire. Despite making a terrible first impression, Claire appoints her as assistant on her trip to London. On the flight there, her ticket is upgraded to business class, and a handsome co-passenger, William, mistakes her for the director of the company she works for. Will begins to court her after they reach London, making her stream of lies grow ever longer. The trip carries Claire beyond her wildest dreams, in a rush of glamorous events, thrilling facades, and a dazzling romance. Here are some romantic comedy movies like ‘Upgraded,’ which send their protagonists on a transformative romantic journey.
8. Maid in Manhattan (2002)
Directed by Wayne Wang, ‘Maid in Manhattan’ is a romantic comedy that tells the story of Marisa Ventura, a hardworking single mother (Jennifer Lopez) who works as a maid at a luxurious Manhattan hotel. One day, Marisa tries on a guest’s designer outfit and is mistaken for a wealthy socialite by a charming politician named Christopher Marshall. Despite their vastly different backgrounds, Marisa and Christopher are drawn to each other, leading to a whirlwind romance.
However, their budding relationship is threatened by the class divide and the disapproval of Christopher’s ambitious chief of staff. The love story of the couple starts off with a case of mistaken identity just as in ‘Upgraded.’ Both movies present delightfully comedic stories of romances that bridge a wide wealth gap.
7. Two Weeks Notice (2002)
Under the direction of Marc Lawrence, ‘Two Weeks Notice’ follows the tumultuous relationship between Lucy Kelson, a brilliant but neurotic lawyer (Sandra Bullock), and George Wade, a charming and irresponsible billionaire (Hugh Grant). Lucy becomes George’s chief counsel, tasked with handling his whims and eccentricities, but she grows increasingly frustrated with his lack of regard for her professional advice.
When Lucy decides to resign, George realizes how much he relies on her and tries to win her back, leading to a series of humorous and heartfelt misadventures. For those who enjoyed the comedic elements of ‘Upgraded,’ ‘Two Weeks Notice’ will present hysterical scenes based on the unlikely couple’s confused feelings for each other.
6. Legally Blonde (2001)
Helmed by Robert Luketic, ‘Legally Blonde,’ is a delightful comedy that follows the journey of Elle Woods, a bubbly and determined sorority girl who enrolls in Harvard Law School to win back her ex-boyfriend. Despite facing skepticism and ridicule from her classmates and professors, Elle proves herself to be a capable and resourceful student, using her unique intelligence and charm to excel in her studies.
Along the way, Elle discovers her own worth and potential, ultimately realizing that she is more than capable of achieving her dreams without relying on anyone else. If you liked the empowering narrative in ‘Upgraded,’ which sees Ana following her passion and being propelled up the ladder at work, you are sure to enjoy the themes of self-acceptance and woman empowerment in ‘Legally Blonde.’
5. Sabrina (1995)
‘Sabrina,’ with Sydney Pollack in the director’s chair, revolves around the romantic entanglements of the Larrabee family, a wealthy and influential clan in Long Island. Sabrina Fairchild, daughter of the chauffeur of the Larrabee estate, returns after spending several years in Paris working for Vogue magazine. Sabrina is now an almost unrecognizably beautiful and refined woman and has always harbored a crush on the younger Larrabee brother, David. Something of a playboy, David finds himself attracted to Sabrina while being engaged to a wealthy heiress.
Unwilling to let the corporate marriage fall through, the pragmatic older Larrabee brother, Linus (Harrison Ford), intervenes. However, he ends up falling for Sabrina himself. Much like Ana in ‘Upgraded,’ Sabrina is a simple yet elegant woman who ends up drawing the attention of a handsome and wealthy man who ends up falling head over heels for her. If you liked the visual richness of the former, ‘Sabrina’ will draw you in with its refined environments and grounded portrayals of affluent characters.
4. You’ve Got Mail (1998)
A Nora Ephron directorial, ‘You’ve Got Mail’ is a charming romantic comedy that takes place in the early days of the internet era. The film follows the unlikely romance between Kathleen Kelly, a sweet-natured bookstore owner (Meg Ryan), and Joe Fox (Tom Hanks), a ruthless businessman. Unbeknownst to each other, Kathleen and Joe become pen pals through anonymous emails, sharing their thoughts, dreams, and frustrations with one another.
However, their budding relationship is complicated by the fact that they are rivals in the fiercely competitive world of bookselling. As Kathleen and Joe grapple with their growing feelings for each other, their inevitable clash in the real world will test the strength of their romance. With its witty dialogue, endearing characters, and timeless themes, ‘You’ve Got Mail’ will capture the hearts of those appreciating the initially facetious romance in ‘Upgraded,’ which leads to a deeper bond.
3. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)
‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ is a classic romantic comedy-drama based on Truman Capote’s novella of the same name. The film, directed by Blake Edwards, follows the quirky and enigmatic Holly Golightly, a stylish and vivacious socialite who leads a glamorous yet emotionally empty life in New York City. Holly’s world is turned upside down when she meets her new neighbor, Paul Varjak, a struggling writer who becomes fascinated by her free-spirited nature and mysterious past. As their unlikely friendship blossoms into romance, Paul becomes determined to learn more about Holly and help her find true happiness. For those who liked the stylish characters and glamorous settings in ‘Upgraded,’ ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ will be a treat with its iconic fashion, memorable characters, and timeless romance.
2. Cruella (2021)
In the directorial hands of Craig Gillespie, ‘Cruella’ reimagines the iconic Disney villain Cruella de Vil. Set in 1970s London, the film follows the journey of Estella, a young and ambitious fashion designer, as she transforms into the notorious Cruella. Born with a natural talent for fashion, Estella dreams of making a name for herself in the elite industry. However, her path to success is hindered by her troubled past and the manipulative Baroness von Hellman, a formidable fashion icon.
As Estella enters the cutthroat fashion industry, she embraces her darker side and adopts the persona of Cruella, determined to outshine the Baroness and exact revenge for past wrongs. Those who were intrigued by Ana’s foray into fashion and her quick advances in the industry will be enthralled by Estella’s imaginative trailblazing in ‘Cruella.’
1. Crazy Rich Asians (2018)
With Jon M. Chu at the helm, ‘Crazy Rich Asians,’ offers a glimpse into the opulent world of Singapore’s elite. The story revolves around Rachel Chu, an intelligent and down-to-earth economics professor who accompanies her boyfriend, Nick Young, to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. However, Rachel soon discovers that Nick hails from one of the wealthiest and most influential families in the country, and she finds herself thrust into a world of extravagance and social scrutiny.
As Rachel wraps her head around the complexities of Nick’s family and their disapproval of her humble background, she must confront her own insecurities about fitting into a world that seems intent on keeping her out. With its lavish settings, colorful characters, and heartfelt moments, ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ will appeal to fans of ‘Upgraded,’ which sports similar elements of high society.