'Upcoming Summer' Review: Netflix Chinese movie must-watch for those who dare to love
Netflix’s newest Chinese film, 'Upcoming Summer', talks about the story of high school classmates Chen Chen (Wendy Zhang) and Zheng Xing (Leo Wu). A coincidental meeting that nobody sees coming changes their fate forever. The movie is a perfect amalgamation of high school love, infatuation, music, change, and grief from separation. Chen Chen has to face consequences for what started as a mere cover up for bombing her exam, adding onto her parents’ rocky marriage. Zheng Xing, on the other hand, is a handsome Tik Tok sensation, who failed to appear for his exam and therefore has to repeat a year. Zheng Xing starts a conversation with Chen Chen to clarify and find out more about the lie that her teacher publicly announced in class regarding their past relationship which was non-existent to start with.
Chen Chen failed the College Entrance Examination on purpose, as opposed to the staged lie of a dramatic breakup of her hypothetical relationship with Zheng Xing. Having said that, Zheng Xing had missed the exams as well when in reality, he was in Beijing following his DJ ex-girlfriend’s concert in hopes of mending a broken relationship. Chen Chen saw this as an opportunity and decided to use Zheng Xing for her benefit and luckily for her, he decided to play along as well, since he had nothing to lose.
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Chen Chen plays a strong supportive friend to Zheng Xing when the latter opens up about how strongly he feels about rhythm, his passion for electric music, and his lifelong dream of becoming a professional DJ. They share an intimate yet highly vulnerable moment at a concert, where she makes him understand the truth; they must learn to accept the fact that the people they fall for might never feel the same way about them.
The movie is moderately paced with subtle characters and childish behavior. Aside from the chaos that started within the four walls of a classroom, we also see glimpses of a broken marriage, affairs, and shoddy parenting. The song “Moments” and “Something Just Like This” plays in the background frequently and is befitting in each scene. Both of these songs also happen to be Zheng Xing’s favorites.
Overall, ‘Upcoming Summer’ is for the people who don’t let go of their inner child, for those who dare to love and be loved back, once again.
The movie is currently streaming on Netflix.