About cityonfire.com

Cityonfire.com's 2008-2010 illustration by by Dan-O.

Cityonfire.com’s 2008-2010 illustration by by Dan-O.

In 1996 I launched a website titled The Ultimate Filmography of Jackie Chan, which was one of the first websites to dig deep into the films of Jackie Chan, including his more obscure titles.

A year later, The Ultimate Filmography of Jackie Chan was re-titled Jackie Chan: Fist of the East Star. It was around this time that I started accepting reviews from anyone who was willing to share their thoughts. The importance of multiple opinions – as well as writing styles – was a logical way of really knowing what to expect out of a film, so it made perfect sense to have more than one view.

In 1999, I finally settled with cityonfire.com, and transformed a Jackie Chan-only site to a database of reviews, covering all of Asian Cinema.

Today, cityonfire.com is still going strong. In addition to regularly updated Asian Cinema reviews, we now cover the latest movie news (Asian, mainstream, cult and pretty much anything we think is relevant to our visitors). We also update our “New and Coming Soon Blu-ray/DVD Release” section, which is designed to keep you informed with the latest Asian, Martial Arts and other notable titles on Blu-ray and DVD.

On behalf of all the writers and contributors (past and present) that help keep this site going, I hope that cityonfire.com will be one of your prime resources on the net. Thank you for visiting and feel free to drop me an e-mail!

Jeffrey Bona

Special thanks to all who have made, and continue to make, cityonfire.com possible:

Numskull, Vic Nguyen, Dan Jackson (aka Dan-O), Joe909, James H., Ningen31, Equinox21, Alexander (aka Time and Tide), Joseph Kuby, Gwailo, Len, Aloho, Dorgon, Shazbot!, Woody (aka The Invincible), Reefer, Ro, Mlindber, Brmanuk, Neil K. (hkfilm.net), Tequila, American Ninja, Amir (aka Raven), Tony F. (aka Sawred), Alvin George, Ben Poppel, Sideshowsito, Goldenfist, Mhat B., TheFrankEinstein, Li-Wang, Yi Long, Ryan Lundgren (aka American Ninja Man), Marcia Franklin, T-Style, Bentley Siu-Lung, Tyler, Daniel, Klotera, Yates, Kenneth T, Perkele, Canuck, EKU®, Owlman, Monkey Goddess, Dragon Ma, Loonieweed, Mlindber, nineballninja, Dave Bell, Slaxor, MilkCan, Retter, Ozark Savage, HKFanatic, Jesse, Kioko, Bad Habitt, JJ Hatfield, Laser Beahm, T. J. Gushiniere, DM2, DiP, Ghost Dragon Triad, oneleaf, Sapo, Paul Bramhall, Dirac, Matthew Le-feuvre, Kyle Warner, Martin Sandison, Sam the Man, Zach Nix, Matija Makotoichi Tomic, Chris Hatcher and Jonathan Mitchell.

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45 Responses to About cityonfire.com

  1. Turhan Juarren Gushiniere says:

    How does one go about doing reviews for COF? I have done fan reviews for HKFLIX, but they seem to have issues at present. There are a lot of good people that posted on that particular site that are really frustrated such as my self.Viewing Martial arts movies are a passion and a hobby of mine that relieve stress for this old soldier turned cop.

    Thankyou, The Former Sgt. T

    • Cinema says:

      Hi Lt. T !
      Glad to see you here. As always I look forward to reading your reviews and comments. : )

      • I’m glad to see both of you here. Looking forward to your work. =D

        • Turhan Juarren Gushiniere says:

          Thanks for the welcome Mighty Peking Man! I have been checking out your outstanding reviews, though I liked Bruce Li’s Deadly Strike a little more than you. ( smiles at the computer console ).

      • Turhan Juarren Gushiniere says:

        Hi Cinema!

        Glad to see you also! I’m looking forward to your reviews and comments. I’m very busy breaking into the administrative end at work, I miss my patrol car! However, I hope to get into the swing of things here soon. I just received OngBak 3, from what I have seen it looks good!!

        • JJ Hatfield says:

          I have left “cinema” behind and I am willing to use my name here. JJ is fine. 🙂 Don’t tell anyone as that is my name through the Federal Witness Protection Program.

  2. fifbeat says:

    Sgt. T (former)…

    Thanks for your interest. Yeah, I know what you mean. Hopefully they’ll work out their issues. I’ll drop you an email and set you up with a user and password. Basically, you’ll be able to submit them, and in most cases, your reviews will be LIVE in a matter of hours. =D Anyways, look out for an email from me.

  3. Adam Helfrich says:

    I have also been deeply disappointed and discouraged with the Hkflix situation. Watching Asian cinema along with reading and writing reviews was a hobby of mine as well. I don’t know the situation over there, but I’m ready to contribute to another site if given the opportunity.

    Many thanks,
    Adam Helfrich

  4. JJ Hatfield says:

    Hi Adam!
    Good to see you here!

    No need to worry or wonder anymore about hkflix. The site no longer exists, the web site is gone. If you go to the links you will see what I mean. Well actually it’s been gone for a long time but now the web site has ended any question. There is no forwarding information available. hkflix R.I.P.

    After putting the primary reviewers through hell over there I am truly grateful to City On Fire.com and Mighty Peking Man for the kind invitation to post here. I of course have no authority but from my experiences your reviews will be enthusiastically welcomed! Adam, don’t let the way you were treated make you think for a second you do not have value and talent! You were actually part of a select group that was really really F$cked over.
    There is a lot to offer here besides the fantastic reviews. I’m sure you will be checking out the “Nora Miao” section. 🙂

    Start writing reviews so we can discuss the “proper” ratings!

    JJ Hatfield (JJ is fine)

    Sincerely glad you are here Adam.

    • Adam Helfrich says:

      Thanks for the kind words, JJ!
      It made my day!

      I saw the Go Daddy add in place of the beloved Hkflix and was bummed all day. A part of me is actually glad that something happened eliminating that feeling of limbo, although I was holding out hope for a better end result. I’ve been reading various forums on this topic and one individual stated he was contacted by hkflix on his order making it sound like everything was fine while others claimed that the site was officially dead. Unfortunately, I tend to believe the latter. Either way, there is nothing we can do, so I figure moving on to another site is the best option.

      I have been checking out this site and it is very good. The reviews are excellent as are some of the other options such as the article on the evolution of collecting martial arts cinema. I thoroughly enjoyed that along with many of the news articles. I’m extremely glad to see a community of top-notch opinions along with some familiar folks (you and Lt T!) and hope to submit a review soon!

      Once again, thanks for the kind words, and I will read your reviews very soon.
      Adam Helfrich

      • Adam, welcome! I did hit you up with an email regarding user name and password. Thanks for checking out the site so far. As I said in the email, much more reviews will be added (new and old) from the old site. Should get a chunk done in the next few days. Look forward to seeing you around and reading your reviews. So far, the update to the new site (wordpress) has been great. Page visits have doubled and it just feels and looks better. Ningen (news guy) is doing an awesome job of the circulating news tidbits. =D

        • Turhan Juarren Gushiniere says:

          Hi Adam, glad to see you at COF! I was sorry to see HKFLIX go also but at least we have closure. You start writing those fabulous reviews as JJ stated! I’ll be able to start soon, the Legislative session for Ms. is winding down and soon I won’t have all of the state’s represantatives to serve and protect at our capitol. I’m also finally getting a handle on my new duties, so I can actually start watching those movies we know, love, and review! Glad you made it over buddy!

          • Adam Helfrich says:

            I was loyal to hkflx for over 7 yrs (most my reviews were under a defaut addy) and was sad to see it go. I’m sure u feel the same way, but ppl of the same theory flock together. Perhaps, we were given Another opportunity here. The reviews here are excellent so I wonder if I can cut the cheese in terms of quality. I just ask for some freedom so I can devise my own style.

      • Adam Helfrich says:

        I’m sorry, mr mpm, but I didn’t get that email. Can u send it again? I reveiewed my addy n its correct.


        For hating email..


  5. Neil Koch says:

    I run Hong Kong Film Net (www.hkfilm.net) and was affiliated with HKFlix for about ten years, having written hundreds of reviews for the site, and am saddened to see them go down in this fashion. They really haven’t been the same company since the ownership change in November 2009.

    I noticed their Facebook page is still active, though, as they have been deleting comments asking about the status of their orders. How hard would it to be to take 30 seconds to put in a status update letting customers know their orders will still be going out?

    A possible silver lining here is that the original owners still have the database (up to Nov. 2009) and the rights to use it. So hopefully he work of reviewers like myself and others, as well as the other info HKFlix contained can be put back up in some fashion.

  6. JJ Hatfield says:

    Hi squeedle,
    HKFlix used to be the only place I felt I could trust with my purchases. I also chose to make it the primary location for reviews and discussions. I knew a lot of you by name and was very sad when it sold. No point in going into specifics but the site was never the same. I nearly swore off posting anything anywhere however MPM was kind enough to invite the battered reviewers to post at City On Fire. It’s good to have your encouragement. And thanks for posting, you didn’t have to do it. 🙂

    You have made me greatly relieved to know that back ups exist and you indicate the possibility of that massive amount of information being restored in some capacity. I am very interested in assisting however money is not something I have to offer at the moment. I can certainly load data, do basic code, limited skills sorry but I think to lose all the reviews etc would be a tragedy.
    Thanks again for posting. I know everyone appreciates it.

    • Adam Helfrich says:

      We thank you for giving us the opportunity to vent. See, I’m pretty average but I have ties along wit my 250+ reveiws. Nevermind its over

      • T. J. Gushiniere says:

        For Squeedle and Neil,

        Thanks for the information about HKFLIX. Squeedle, I hope you can get those data bases up and going again some day. Like Adam, I really enjoyed buying and writing reviews for the dearly departed !Change can be good some times. The people here at COF are great! I’ll have more free time soon to resume watching movies and get posted! IT is good to see new friends and old! Whoops, the Sgt. called!

  7. squeedle says:

    It’s GREAT to see you guys here. I still have backups of all the reviews and everything up to October 2009 and will be looking at ways of getting it back online somehow in the near future. If anyone wants to get a hold of me, MPM can facilitate that.

    You’re all fantastic folks and I encourage you to participate on COF.

  8. Adam Helfrich says:

    Wow! This caught my eye! Can old databases from a failed site be brought back? Because of circumstances I’m largely retired on film reviews, but that’s exciting!

  9. JJ Hatfield says:

    Hey Adam! Retired hell, get un-retired! You have a lot to contribute!
    There are no “suggested” movies to review . You can use whatever style you want for the reviews – just read what they let me post!
    Seriously I won’t harass you but it would be great to see a review or two from you. In the mean time your comments are welcome and appreciated.

    As far as restoring databases/websites yes it can certainly be done. The single largest problem I am aware of is money. The original owners do have all info up to October 2009 That is a lot of data! I am not in a position to contribute the kind of money required to get it back online. Then there is the maintenance, code, etc.
    And the site did not fail. The “new” owners drained it dry and then couldn’t/wouldn’t pay their bills.
    Who knows what the fools did with the data from after they took over. If they thought they could squeeze another penny out of it some day they definitely have it.

    Time does go by and I find I think less and less of trying to get something back and more about creating something better. I’m still pulling knives out of my back and wondering if I want to go there.

    Adam, I assure you COF is nothing like your previous experience. MPM has no hidden agendas or demands. You will not be ignored and your review will be respected and posted quickly. MPM treats me just as courteously and sincerely as he did the first time I contacted him. It’s a completely different world Adam. If you feel reviewer mode coming back give COF a try. No BS

    Do keep in touch!

    • T. J. Gushiniere says:

      Adam my friend, don’t make me put you under arrest! New web site, new friends, tons of information, and reviewing old and new from fresher angles and different perspectives! JJ is 100% correct about COF! I’m taking my time getting back into the swing of things but I’ve got one down so far. Change keeps all things new, and though we were betrayed by the Chings that took over HKFLIX, the Ming Dynasty will rise again at COF, compliments of MPM and his crack staff of amazing fighters! LT. T awakens from day dream after falling out of chair.

  10. Adam Helfrich says:

    Outstanding response, T.J. You made me realize, my problems in life and why I remain in poverty is the same reason hkflix shut down! Damn those Chings!. They suck ass! Perhaps we watched too much kungfu lol. Whatever, like hkflix, the Chings are dead. Anyway, before it happened I was preparing to write another Cheng Pei Pei love letter (aka film review) for Lady Hermit .If COF wants my imput, then please make me available. You have my e-mail. Why didn’t it work@COF

  11. T. J. Gushiniere says:

    Good to see you practicing kung fu again Adam! We must try harder! I’m sure MPM is waiting for you to e-mail so he can send you the special manuel. This time we will prevail! Seriously Buddy, I can’t wait to start reading your reviews!!

  12. JJ Hatfield says:

    Adam – are you using the form under “Contact”? Try copying the email and then pasting it into your personal eddress. You should certainly be able to email him that way! Is it possible it got sent to SPAM? Just guessing. One way or another we will take care of this little snafu. You ain’t gettin’ outta here easily!

  13. JJ Hatfield says:

    A message to MPM and Ningen –

    You guys are the best! Honestly! Everyday is new and different here. You both work very hard to keep things entertaining and informative in a visitor friendly manner. My favorite place on the web!


  14. Adam Helfrich says:

    Why have I been denied. Helfrich24@hotmail.com. I’m a major SHAW FAN N EXPERT

    • You haven’t been denied. lol I know i replied to a few of your emails. hmm… let me drop you a test email right now. (if you don’t get it, PLEASE let me know).

    • JJ Hatfield says:

      Adam try what MPM asks. Oh and did you try what I suggested with the email? I’m helping someone else set up an account and it might seem easy but sometimes e mails, at least mine lol, don’t come out the way I intended. And check your SPAM too.

      Did you do a little bio? or do your login?

      Adam I swear no one is trying to deny you the chance to do reviews. There must be a snafu somewhere.

      • T. J. Gushiniere says:

        Adam, I agree with JJ! There has to be a bug in the process somewhere. Did the test e-mail from MPM work?

        • Adam Helfrich says:

          I can’t believe ppl like sgt and JJ are nice to me. They are talented. I’m ok at best. I live in depression and I officialy retired on this. Lt T says he can bring me back? …..

          • Adam Helfrich says:

            my statements are idiotic as always. I may do this again. What type of movies should I pick apart?

  15. T. J. Gushiniere says:

    Your statements are not idiotic my friend! Trust me, I deal with people everyday, doing what they should not! Yes, I can take leave and use my resources to kidnap you and compel to write reviews on some good Shaw brothers favorites! Remember, I am ex-soldier, and was not too shabby in that department! I’m expecting a review soon, from a very talented writer that I respect a great deal!

  16. Adam Helfrich says:

    My friend, T J wants me to write again.

  17. Adam Helfrich says:

    I’m retired

  18. ezequiel gonzalez says:

    I have been looking for an alternative for HKFLIX.com. Could anyone suggest a website?

  19. Pleas enjoy the movie on my You Tube Channel…….. titled ” The Four Elements of Boom “

  20. To Whom It May Concern,

    Hello! I hope this finds you well. My name is Elisa Gyotoku and I am one of the festival programmers with CAAMFest (formerly the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival). We have recently begun our call for entries for CAAMFest 2014!

    I am reaching out to your prestigious organization, asking for your help to promote our festival’s call for entries. Similar to City On Fire, our organization also brings Asian and Asian American films to the masses.

    We would greatly appreciate being able to post on your website about our call for entries! Please click on the link below and visit our website and call for entries page! If you are interested in our posting, the info presented on the page will be similar to what we will potentially post on your website. I look forward to hearing from you!

    Thank You Kindly,

    Elisa Gyotoku
    Festival Programmer

  21. filmbeats says:

    I’m surprised, I haven’t discovered this website sooner, lots of good reviews here. With recent closures of BeyondHollywood and MidnightEye, I certainly anticipate visiting CityOnFire.

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