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Fruitvale Station (2013)

TOMATOMETER

Average Rating: 8.1/10
Reviews Counted: 185
Fresh: 173
Rotten: 12

Critics Consensus: Passionate and powerfully acted, Fruitvale Station serves as a celebration of life, a condemnation of death, and a triumph for star Michael B. Jordan.

Average Rating: 8.4/10
Reviews Counted: 50
Fresh: 47
Rotten: 3

Critics Consensus: Passionate and powerfully acted, Fruitvale Station serves as a celebration of life, a condemnation of death, and a triumph for star Michael B. Jordan.

AUDIENCE SCORE

Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 35,622

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Movie Info

Winner of both the Grand Jury Prize for dramatic feature and the Audience Award for U.S. dramatic film at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, director Ryan Coogler's FRUITVALE STATION follows the true story of Oscar Grant (Michael B. Jordan), a 22-year-old Bay Area resident who wakes up on the morning of December 31, 2008 and feels something in the air. Not sure what it is, he takes it as a sign to get a head start on his resolutions: being a better son to his mother (Octavia Spencer), whose … More

Rating:
R (for some violence, language throughout and some drug use)
Genre:
Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
Ryan Coogler
In Theaters:
On DVD:
Jan 14, 2014
Box Office:
$16.1M
Runtime:
The Weinstein Company - Official Site


Cast



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Critic Reviews for Fruitvale Station

All Critics (185) | Top Critics (50) | Fresh (173) | Rotten (12) | DVD (2)

Michael B. Jordan is simply brilliant in his portrayal of Grant, whom Coogler presents as a generally happy, if complex and somewhat troubled young man.

Full Review… | December 10, 2013
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

The intimacy of debut writer-director Ryan Coogler's approach to the film and the no-frills, believably real quality of the main performances combine to drive the senselessness of Oscar's killing home with visceral impact.

Full Review… | December 10, 2013
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Writer-director Ryan Coogler's [film is an] assured and evenhanded debut.

Full Review… | December 10, 2013
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

It's hard not to watch Fruitvale Station with a coiled dread... Yet, Coogler's greatest achievement may be in reminding us that Grant was a work in progress with people who loved him in spite of his flaws and because of his hopes.

Full Review… | July 26, 2013
Denver Post
Top Critic

You wonder if Coogler would have felt freer had Grant somehow lived that night, if the director weren't put in a position where he felt the need to honor the dead by bringing him to dramatic life. But he believes in his ambition.

Full Review… | July 26, 2013
Grantland
Top Critic

We feel the death on the platform so acutely not because it's a stupid act of randomness, but hardly untypical racist violence, but because we've come to love this man.

Full Review… | July 26, 2013
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

[Fruitvale Station] has a profound emotional impact by keeping things simple.

Full Review… | October 10, 2014
Birmingham Mail

Coogler's realistic debut recreates Grant's final day with affection, refusing to cast him as either saint or sinner.

Full Review… | September 23, 2014
Times [UK]

There's a sincere clarity that Michael B. Jordan achieves from beginning to end. Raw and proficient in delivery, his performance places him near the top of the most exciting actors to watch.

Full Review… | September 16, 2014
AwardsCircuit.com

Flawed though it is by overstating the obvious, Fruitvale Station is also sensitively acted and well-intentioned.

Full Review… | June 27, 2014
Windy City Times

You might expect a film about the real-life shooting of a young black man by a white cop to burn with outrage and fury, but writer-director Ryan Coogler's Fruitvale Station is notable for its restraint and compassion.

Full Review… | June 15, 2014
Movie Talk

With his debut feature, writer-director Ryan Coogler recreates a real-life event with remarkable artistry.

Full Review… | June 9, 2014
Contactmusic.com

The air of impending disaster (we open with the notorious mobile phone footage) culminates in a harrowing final act that is both chilling and heartbreaking.

Full Review… | June 8, 2014
Observer [UK]

Brilliantly observed and very moving.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
Independent

It focuses on its subject's humanity and assesses the tragedy on a personal rather than explicitly sociopolitical level. However, the way in which it fleshes out Oscar's character makes it an acutely political work.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
Sight and Sound

The problem with Fruitvale Station isn't that it is so dense with foreboding but that foreboding is the only register it has.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
New Statesman

Jordan doesn't beg for our sympathy and is all the more magnetic as a result. The finale is devastating.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
This is London

The film's version of Grant has been carefully calibrated to be just nice enough to scare up empathy and just mischievous enough to take some polish of his character.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
Irish Times

There is something almost spiritual in the eerie importance that all the ordinary, banal facts of a life achieve under scrutiny, as time is running out.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Guardian

Why is goodhearted liberal cinema sometimes so dumb?

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Financial Times

Coogler's spare, sombre style serves the story well, skillfully avoiding cliche and formula to soberly rage against a grave miscarriage of justice.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Sky Movies

The emotionally wrenching Fruitvale Station doesn't feel like a call-to-arms so much as a call against them.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Daily Telegraph

Just... no. This is heartstring-tugging hooey.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Little White Lies

It's an emotive film about an emotive incident, but an unmolested account of Grant's demise could have had so much more impact.

Full Review… | June 4, 2014
The Skinny

This chronicle of a death foretold celebrates an individual's efforts to do better even as it laments his - and his nation's - difficulties in moving on.

Full Review… | June 4, 2014
Film4

It's ragged around the edges, but this remains a stirring tribute to Grant. And coaxed by the assured Coogler, Jordan delivers a performance that will long be remembered.

Full Review… | June 2, 2014
Total Film

Audience Reviews for Fruitvale Station

A tragic story of intolerance and injustice that sustains an always underlying tension right from the first scene (when we are told how it all ends) and eschews any hint of melodrama, portraying Oscar as a three-dimensional person with qualities and flaws, in order to remind us all of the value of human life.

More
blacksheepboy
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

Based on a true story, and beginning with its ending, there should be no tension in this movie - you know how it will turn out. And yet, the run-up is compelling and honest quotidian drama, and the young leads Michael B. Jordan (veteran of The Wire, no surprise) and Melonie Diaz create characters you truly invest in. Gritty, beautiful film without a contrived plot; a kind of "in memoriam" movie that's realistic and unsentimental. Refreshing!

More
danperry17
Daniel Perry

Super Reviewer

Well-paced, well-crafted, and ultimately heartbreaking, Fruitvale Station is a short but timely film that tells an important story.

More

Every step brings you closer to the edge.

Nice Film! Fruitvale Station is a solid film, well paced and edited, with a strong lead performance by Michael B. Jordan and some standout work by Octavia Spencer. One wonders how much of the screenplay is based on truth, but whether this is or isn't a biased view of an event by the filmmaker, it is highly emotionally affective filmmaking. In light of other recent, racially charged headlines, it cannot help but become a hot topic. This vivid, stark reenactment of an event that should never have happened is a relatively simple tale of a complex life, a kind of urban, American tragedy. It is a powerful, filmic statement that raises questions that demand answers.

This is the true story of Oscar, a 22-year-old Bay Area resident who wakes up on the morning of December 31, 2008 and feels something in the air. Not sure what it is, he takes it as a sign to get a head start on his resolutions: being a better son to his mother, whose birthday falls on New Year's Eve, being a better partner to his girlfriend, who he hasn't been completely honest with as of late, and being a better father to T, their beautiful 4 year old daughter. He starts out well, but as the day goes on, he realizes that change is not going to come easy. He crosses paths with friends, family, and strangers, each exchange showing us that there is much more to Oscar than meets the eye. But it would be his final encounter of the day, with police officers at the Fruitvale BART station that would shake the Bay Area to its very core, and cause the entire nation to be witnesses to the story of Oscar Grant.

More
MANUGINO
Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

Fruitvale Station Quotes


Oscar Grant:
I got a daughter...
– Submitted by Casual F (11 months ago)
Sophina:
What is going on?
– Submitted by Max T (14 months ago)
Oscar Grant:
You shot me.
– Submitted by Moe J (14 months ago)
Tatiana:
Where's Daddy?
– Submitted by Moe J (14 months ago)
Oscar Grant:
I'm good, I'm good, I'm gonna be good.
– Submitted by Moe J (14 months ago)

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