Iron & Silk (1990)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  14 August 1991 (France)
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Reviews: 6 user | 7 critic

Mark Salzman always was interested in Kung-Fu and the Chinese culture, claims to have seen every Kung-Fu movie. 1982, with a degree in Chinese literature, he visits a province university in... See full summary »



(autobiography), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Hangcheng Dong ...
Teacher Cai
Xihong Jiang ...
Teacher Zhang
Jeanette Tsui Lin ...
Teacher Hei
Qingfu Pan ...
Mark Salzman ...
Teacher Mark
Xudong Sun ...
Funglin To ...
Old Sheep
Yang Xiru ...
Dr. Wang
Xiao Ying ...
Hu Yun ...
Fatty Du
Lu Zhiquan ...
Teacher Li
Genyuan Zhuang ...
Teacher Xu


Mark Salzman always was interested in Kung-Fu and the Chinese culture, claims to have seen every Kung-Fu movie. 1982, with a degree in Chinese literature, he visits a province university in China for two years to teach Chinese teachers the English language. He learns the refinements of correct behavior among Chinese people, makes friends with his pupils, falls in love with the young doctor Ming, learns Uschu (similar Kung-Fu) from the famous teacher Pan... but also learns about political repression, especially when he's forbidden contact with some of his friends. Written by Tom Zoerner <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


As a student in America, he searched for ancient wisdom. As a teacher in China, he learned to find it within himself.


Comedy | Drama







Release Date:

14 August 1991 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Ferro & seta  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$356,077 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Took four years to film. See more »


[first lines]
Mark: [voiceover] I hate to admit it, but when I graduated from college, I thought I was ready for anything. That is, until I stepped off the train in Hangzhou. Here I was in a country of a billion people, and I didn't know a single one. This place was different than what I'd expected. It wasn't at all like what I'd seen in the Kung Fu movies. No one else I knew stayed up all night to watch that stuff, but I was hooked.
[screaming, Kung Fu movie clips with English subtitles]
Mark: The hero was ...
See more »

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User Reviews

Realism and thoughtfulness
16 February 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of my best friends introduced this book to me around 1988 or so. I read it and loved it... 1990 came and I was in NY going to college when this premiered in NYC. I couldn't make it to the city to see it and I was sorely saddened.

Eventually I did get a chance to see it in a more "artsy" theater and was happy to go. It's NOT a flashy high production value movie, but still the filming was as good as I'd expect, or even demand for this film.

My original interest in the topic had more to do with the kung fu aspect of it, and for that you won't be let down, unless you NEED flash. There aren't fight scenes beyond the typical training and sparring, all of which are impressive and real. Seeing the young boy in the training hall execute such awe inspiring techniques and Master Pan being a hard-ass was excellent.

The love interest theme was a draw too. My memory of the book (sitting on my shelf at home unread for a loooong time) is thin, so I don't recall how deep it went.

It was short, but I like long movies.

I also bought the VHS of this movie.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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