La Brassiere (2001)

Reviewed by: Hyomil
Date: 01/04/2011

Reviewer Score: 10

Reviewed by: JohnR
Date: 07/29/2007
Summary: A Must-Watch If You're Male or Female

I'm going to be a ditto head here and say that Danton's review below expressed how I felt about the film, and better than I could have expressed it.

This is romantic comedy at its best. I can't exaggerate the wit and intelligence on display. The writing is excellent; Lau Ching Wan is Lau Ching Wan; Carina Lau perfect; even Louis Koo and Gigi Leung turn in positive performances.

It will make you laugh and teach you something you don't know about the opposite sex.

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: evirei
Date: 12/20/2005
Summary: It'll surely make your day

Just as women tought men actually don't understand what they need. This show is out to prove that there is some sensitive and understanding guys out there. Cleverly crafted and the right dosage of humour, laughter and romance is what make this movie a must not miss.

It's also another one of those show that sets you sitting down your favourite lazy couch and wonder at times about things that you often see yet seldom think about.

The storyline is rather simple. Where it resolves around 2 male designers played by louis koo and lau ching wan being hired in to a bra company to create the ultimate bra. Yes, two males who at the first, disrespect women and bras finally learn the most important lesson in their life. From who? Haha... who other than Gigi Leung and Carina Lau.

Yes. One must ask what is the ultimate bra. This you must see. AND I can say it is a funny yet entertaining way to find out.

Guys must wonder... AH~ I dun wear bra... why bother? Haha.. you are so wrong.. yes... lift yourself from the couch and get get the disc.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: ewaffle
Date: 10/04/2005
Summary: How to make a good comedy

Men have been trying to understand, illustrate and interpret the mental and emotional lives of women for millennia. Attempting to describe how a woman thinks and feels about love has been a major part of the works of Shakespeare, Goethe, Molière and Dante. It has inspired some of the greatest poetry, music and drama of the Western canon—and the great works of the rest of the world, I am sure, although I am not very familiar with them. Movie directors and screenwriters have been just as willing as their text based counterparts to struggle with the depths of the female psyche.

So it isn’t surprising that Patrick Leung and Chan Hing-Kar have made an attempt with their romantic comedy, “La Brassiere”. They come to the conclusion that women want to feel comforted and protected when embraced and that the key to figuring this out is also the key to designing underwear that will be easy to produce for the factory, easy to market for the retailers, both comfortable and pleasurable to wear for the buyer and make a ton of money for the designers. It is not a completely convincing look into the mind of the tender sex, but neither were the sonnets of Petrarch or the novels of D. H. Lawrence.

There is a lot to like about “La Brassiere”. Louis Koo, playing the designer Wayne, is as talented and versatile an actor as anyone now working, and leads an extraordinary cast. Koo goes from strength to strength. He is good in comedy or romance. He can play a triad chieftain or an ordinary citizen driven to murder by circumstance. He can transcend mediocre material and illuminate good writing. He is a real movie star, comfortable in his fame and never simply playing “Louis Koo”. Lau Ching-Wan completes the male yin/yang coupling. Lau’s Johnny is younger, more conventionally handsome and a bit wilder than Wayne.

Seasoned pro Carina Lau is Wayne’s love interest. Samantha, the tough as nails president of the lingerie firm, was her 54th movie or TV role and she is as sexy and delectable as ever. She is credible when, after a night of passion with Wayne, she simply tells him to clean up the office and get to work—it was very nice rolling around with him on piles of pink fabric but that was last night—time of punch the clock and start designing. The strikingly beautiful Gigi Leung is the former chief designer who now has to work with the as yet unproven Wayne and Johnny. She is unhappy that they are brought in as her equals and also impervious to Johnny’s charms—a lack of response that makes her (or at least conquering her) all the more desirable for him. Karen Mok is excellent in a thankless but well-written role.

The surprising effect that Wayne and Johnny have on women—at least the women who work for the bra company—is shown when they first walk in the door. They are the first male employees of the firm and, based on the response the get, might be the first men that this particular group of women has ever seen. They faint, swoon, trip over chairs, drop work on the floor and just act silly. While it seems at first that this is simply a shared fantasy of the two men, subsequent action indicates that the filmmakers wanted to show them as quite fascinating to most women.

On key element of the movie is that Wayne and Johnny, no matter how juvenile they might sometimes act, are serious designers who have done excellent work in the past (although not for women’s clothing) and who are committed to the success of the project. They work very long hours, are willing to put up with public humiliation while doing “market research” and never stop trying to figure out just what makes a particular bra something that women will want to buy. A part of this is the costume design—Koo and Lau are almost always in sharp suits that drape properly and fit them well. These are guys who know good clothing and who take their new jobs very seriously, even though they also know how to have a good time.

“La Brassiere” is a very entertaining romp and is highly recommended. It is superior to and much more enjoyable than a great deal of what Hollywood thinks is romantic comedy these days. The guys in Tinseltown have learned (and appropriated) quite a bit from John Woo and his action brethren and from the Japanese horror masters. They could pick up some pointers on the comedy front as well.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: j.crawford
Date: 05/07/2005
Summary: funny as hell.

The film was funny as hell, very different for these directors after Born Wild. Good screenwriting makes this one strong. Cinematography is suberb with beautiful use of color. I join many in praise of this one. Even Gigi Leung, who I don't like, is quite good.

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: Neo Cheng
Date: 10/05/2003
Summary: A 4/5 stars Movie

La Brassiere (2001)

Main Genre: Comedy

Movie Substance:
Comedy 70%;
Romanticism 20%;
Drama 10%

Movie Statistics:
Acting 3/5;
Story 4/5;
Tension 4/5;
Soundtrack 3/5;
Directing 4/5

Genre Statistics:
Humor 4/5;
Romance 3/5

Overall Rating:

Reviewed by: icacutee
Date: 04/17/2003

Fantastic. This movie is great.

The plot is something new, attractive. Any comedy with Lau Ching Wan is funny - guaranteed.

Just Louis Koo and Lau Ching Wan wearing bras with fake breasts is worth the money paid.

The best people of the cast was Lau Ching Wan and Gigi Leung. What more can I say about Lau Ching Wan? He acts the character well. Gigi has something new here. She is funny, leaving her "good girl" image behind. Also, the Stephen Fung cameo was funny.

Great movie. Worth watching if looking for laughs. Great even after repeated viewings.

Reviewed by: Dyogenez
Date: 11/17/2002
Summary: Amazing

This is definetely one of my favorite HK movies. It is about 2 guys who get a job working for a bra manufacturer and must design a bra. The office is filled with cute girls and fun conversation making for endless laughs. The main two actors MAKE this movie. Louis Koo and Lau Ching are amazing, and the chemistry created works out in every scene. Gigi is, as always, her cute and charismatic self, as one of the only girls who doesn't fall for the guys charms from the start. I cannot wait to see the sequal to this one!


Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: Stardust
Date: 05/12/2002
Summary: HKMovies Still Have Hope

As corny as it this may sound, "La Brassiere" is the movie that convinced me to give Hong Kong movies another chance. I gave up on HK movies a few years ago after watching a string of pathetic garbage. So why did I all of a sudden decided to give this particular movie a try? Two words: LOUIS KOO. Why? Because I was also watching the TVB serial "A Step Into The Past" at the time. So thanks to friends' recomendations and the fact that my latest swoon was in it, I saw the movie. And boy, was I ever glad I did!

"La Brassiere" is a (literally) colorful comedy - the sets and clothes are all pastel or neon colored. The story is simple, old fashioned, and predictable - two male chauvinists meet two feminists and learn about respect and love.

The actors and actresses are very familiar to the viewers: a mix of teen idols with adored veterans. Sean Lau is as hilarious as ever. You just know that he's gonna say or do something funny whenever he enters the scene. Louis Koo is fantastic here, not to mention amazingly good looking (sorry, I'm biased...don't forget, I gave this movie a chance totally because of him). LK fans will not be disappointed. By the way, I wonder how many people ran out to by neon-colored shirts and tanning lights after watching him? As for the girls, Carina Lau and Gigi Leung, they look pretty and do a good job, but are clearly shadowed by the guys, since they have most of the jokes.

As for flaws, There are two. Firstly, the pairing of the couples. Like many other HK movies, the story likes to pair everyone together. Chemistry exists in the Louis-Gigi pair (who can forget that romantic "hug"), but not in the Sean-Carina pair. Obviously, they are placed together because the storyline says so. Separately, they're great, but once they cross the romantic line, the pair goes downhill whenever they share a scene. The second flaw is (interestingly) the most talked about part of the movie: the one-continuous-take-with-the-guys-trying-on-bras scene. So then why is it flawed if its practically the best part? Because of all the laughing by Gigi and the crew members behind the scenes. Its great to capture the reactions of Louis and Sean with their natural laughing and all, but why the heck are there other laughs in the background? And Gigi can't even say her lines properly.

Overall, a must-see comedy, probably the best in a long time. Even if you don't like comedies or any of the actors/actresses, you won't be disappointed. Or, even watching it for Louis Koo is good enough even if you're not a fan.

Rating:10/10 (for Louis Koo alone is also 10/10)

Reviewer Score: 10

Reviewed by: snookie_1
Date: 03/30/2002
Summary: fantastic

i think all u need to tell me to get me to watch this movie, is to tell me i'll get to see sean lau and louis koo in bras....o well...this is the story of two womanizing hunks johnny and wayne who receive a miracle from above by getting jobs at an all-female bra company...not only do they get to hang around wif pretty girls...they get to hang out wif pretty girls in bras...anyway...romance ensues with sean lau and carina lau and gigi leung and louis koo...great performances and great coupling...this movie is a riot a blast and everything else...u gotta see it...this is the definition of a good scriptwriter, taknig an old plot and giving it a makeover and turning it into pure fun...nice cameos by gc goobi, karen mok, and stephen fung who's character is obsessed with 36 c's or something...=)...gotta see it to believe it...it is now one of my fav hk movies of all time...highly recommended...9.5/10

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: MrBooth
Date: 02/05/2002
Summary: Ultimate movie

The ultimate movie has 3 purposes. Firstly, it should make the viewer smile, or even laugh. Secondly, it should be intelligent, and make the viewer think. Thirdly, it should provide the viewer with a legitimate excuse to look at womens breasts for a couple of hours. I am happy to report that La Brassiere qualifies as the ultimate movie!

Enough has been said about this one already - definitely one of the best movies to come out of HK recently. Funny, clever, original, touching and with excellent performances from the 4 leads (Lau Ching Wan, Carina Lau, Gigi Leung and even Louis Koo). I'll never look at breasts in quite the same way again :))

Reviewer Score: 9

Reviewed by: magic-8
Date: 01/17/2002
Summary: A Painless Comedy

Patrick Leung's "La Brassiere" harkens back to the broad based comedies of the early 80's. What separates "La Brassiere" from such recent Hong Kong comedies like "Needing You" is the overt sexual theme of having Louis Koo and Lau Ching Wan working as bra designers in an office full of women. The film is more sophomoric than sophisticated when it comes to the comedic appeal, where Koo is the cute one, while Lau is still the mug with a boxer's face, playing against type. The comedy ranges from Lau and Koo wearing bras to the two of them playing with a bra's water gel inserts. Gigi Leung reverts back to her one-dimensional acting style, which means that she is as stiff as ever.

The movie is quite tame by Wong Jing standards, but is fairly diverting, although a tad too long. "La Brassiere" is a painless comedy that tries to appeal to audiences with star power. It was very refreshing to see a comedy that did not have Andy Lau as the lead (familiarity breeds contempt). The writers, Chan Hing-Kar and Amy Chin Siu-Wai, did a sturdy job, but pale in comparison to their earlier effort "Jiang Hu: The Triad Zone." Much of the acting is on the buffoonish end of the spectrum that recalls a high school play, but silly comedies still have a place in Hong Kong, especially when the pickings in theatres are slim.

Reviewed by: MilesC
Date: 01/14/2002
Summary: M'eh...

I've consistently seen this film referred to as being "laugh out loud funny," but I didn't laugh once, and only smiled once or twice. True, I was modestly amused inside, but this comedy doesn't deliver a lot of laughs.

That's not to say its a chore to watch. Somewhat paradoxically, despite its general lack of entertainment value, it also completely failed to bore. The pacing is quite well done with virtually no draggy scenes, and despite the lack of any particularly big laughs, it's all generally agreeable. The cast is all generally appealing, with Louis Koo being notable for both his new hairstyle (as noted below, it is quite a change) and a more distinguished performance than usual. And, again as already mentioned, Lau Ching-Wan's final scene is pretty good. Aside from that, though, I don't have much more to say about this disposable comedy, which is already rapidly being forgotten despite my having viewed it only a few hours ago. Worth a watch for fans of any of the cast or just to see what's making money in HK these days, but unfortunately I got neither laughs nor insight from this middling film.

Reviewed by: danton
Date: 01/07/2002

Everyone's gushing about this Patrick Leung comedy, and there's a good reason why: it's a riot. A total blast. A warm, intelligent, colourful, well-written, funny, endearing comedy that features Lau Ching Wan like you've never seen him before, Louis Koo in a very affable role, Carina Lau competent and under-stated as always, as well as Gigi Leung (whom I normally don't care much about but who had me convinced in this one).

The plot initially didn't seem too appealing to me: 2 male product designers (LCW and LK) join an all-female bra design company to come up with the "ultimate bra". "Oh no", I was thinking to myself, "90 minutes of puerile breast jokes, giggling females swooning at the sight of Louis Koo, predictable romance, and some silly pronouncements on what women truly want..." Well, I was right - and I was so wrong at the same time... The movie is all this, and yet, it's put together in a way that makes it work! Who would have thought that the spirit of Billy Wilder would be revived in HK, and by Patrick Leung of all people. He has put together a candy-colored confection that manages to wrap its silly premise with so much witty observations and inspired funny moments that I soon forgot about my initial reservations and was totally into it. Much of the credit here goes to the 2 male leads, who seem to be having the time of their lives (who wouldn't), and are not afraid to make fun of themselves, including a lengthy sequence that requires them to try on some fake breasts and bras for half a day in order to better understand how women feel. LCW and LK have sort of a Jack Lemmon/Tony Curtis dynamic going here, and much of the humour comes from seeing these two icons of masculinity slowly shifting towards more female manners of behaviour over the course of the movie (highlights here being a sobbing LCW being comforted by his female coworkers after he is found naked in the office, and LK taking on the traditionally female role in a seduction scene...). The movie stays fairly even-handed, though, and pokes fun at both genders in equal measure.

There are so many small moments in this movie that made it work for me (and that showed how much attention was paid to the script). Each character is well fleshed out with their own little quirks and idiosynchrasies. Gigi Leung's character, for example, is depicted as sassy and tough on the outside, yet is later revealed to be living in this ludicrous girl fantasy world with flowing meadows and birthday party hats on the inside, afraid of "being bullied by plastic bags" (you have to see the movie to understand the significance...).

The only downside to this movie I can think of is that it's so good, we'll probably have to live through the indignity of a Hollywood remake starring Mel Gibson and Julia Roberts a few years down the road...

The DVD presentation is excellent, with a clean anamorphic transfer that adequately captures the carefully arranged colour schemes in the movie (lots of pastels and bright candy colours) and some nice extras. The only criticism would have to be the rather small size of the optional subtitles. Strongly recommended.

Reviewed by: Sydneyguy
Date: 01/03/2002
Summary: Ok -ish

WEll i didn't find this as funny as the other reviewers, but being a male i did learn some new information..........

I was suprised but Louis Koo's acting ability. Firstly in the poster i couldn't even tell it was him!! LAu Ching Wan has a great scene in the end.

Though i did have a few laughs, overall it is no where near as SHAOLIN SOCCER but it does have it's good points. I asked a friend about a WATER BRA and there such a thing, but a herbal bra, she didn't know!! So i guess GUYS, if you want to learn a bit about bra,s i think most of the information here is factual!!


Reviewer Score: 6

Reviewed by: slasher
Date: 01/02/2002
Summary: La Brassiere

When a international bra company starts a 'Ultimate Bra' project, they decided to break their men free tradition in the industry. In order to make the Ultimate Bra more creative, they also decided to hire men with no experience in bra.
They then hire Johnny ( Lau Ching Wan ), a former male underwear designer and Wayne ( Louis Koo ) a egotistical prince charming.
The two men finds themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time and with only three months time to design the ultimate bra. They experience hilarious obsticles in the company such as being forced to wear bras with artifitial breasts, getting humiliated for buying bras and falling in love with their bosses ( Garina Lau & Gigi Leung ).
La Brassiere is a comedy not to be missed.

Reviewed by: Inner Strength
Date: 12/20/2001
Summary: Lau Ching Wan in a bra!

One of the pre-Christmas comedies still being shown at some places in Hong Kong at the moment, La Brassiere (Chinese name: Ultimate Bra) is a film about an underwear company and the involment of men working with ideas for new designs. This bothers Carina Lau, who is one of the head worker, and is forced into having to look for 2 male bra designers to work for her company (Lau Ching Wan & Louise Koo). A more original approach to a movie these days I must say, and it's nice to see some more origianlity in Hong Kong for a change, but at times it's just not that great.

Lau Ching Wan is excellent at the most of times, and this comedy role is no exception. Along with a great performance by Gigi Leung, this is a good comedy movie, and I do recommend seeing it. The main problem is, is that the story is not very complex and more should have been added to it so that it wouldn't have dragged as it did at some points in the movie. The comedy too is hard to judge, because some of it is very funny, and other times it's just not. I must say though, I couldn't stop laughing when Lau Ching Wan & Louis Koo where trying out their bras, they too couldn't stop laughing, and they clearly descided to leave that scene in the movie instead of doing it again, this scene alone is well worth watching!

Not sure if it's been released on VCD or DVD yet, but if not, it should be available before the end of the year. I do recommend seeing it though, but only if you like comedies, you will not appriciate it otherwise I fear. Of cause, if you just want to see Lau Ching Wan wearing a bra, then watch it! It's also being used to help promote Gigi Leungs new album too, so expect her songs in it.

Rating: 3.5/5

Reviewer Score: 7