Fruitvale Station ★★★★½

What a devastating movie!

You’ve heard about the story portrayed in Fruitvale Station before. What is sad is that you still hear keep hearing about this kind of tragic story. In light of recent fatal police shootings of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota, the latest in a series of police brutality against civilians that has sparked public outcry, this film couldn't be any more relevant. Fruitvale Station is a truly powerful piece of cinema that makes you feel the impacts of such tragic events and makes you angry at the underlying injustices.

In his impressive feature-length directorial debut, Ryan Coogler offers the audience an intimate look into the life of Oscar Grant III on the last day of 2008 and his multiple roles as a stranger, a boyfriend, a father, and a son. Some parts in the film are obviously fictitious, but it is through Oscar’s interactions with other people that Coogler can flesh him out as a complete human being. A compassionate, loving man with flaws. An ordinary man who falls victim to police brutality.

Michael B. Jordan continues to impress me as an actor. With this movie and Creed, he’s proven he’s a real deal. Octavia Spencer puts in another solid supporting performance as the mother who bears the brunt of grief. The last half an hour, which depicts the incident at the Fruitvale BART station, is some of the most powerful, poignant stuff I’ve seen in a movie in recent memory. The ending, though, is too abrupt for me. But this is a must see!

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