Thursday, February 4, 2016

Movie Review: Fruitvale Station

The beginning of the movie starts off with a real video that was recorded New Year's Day of 2009 at 2:15 A.M. The movie called Fruitvale Station is based on a heart-wrenching true story of a young man named Oscar Grant, who is played by Michael B. Jordan.


The movie kicks off in a bedroom where Oscar and his girlfriend, Sophina, are talking about their life together. Oscar reveals that he used to sell marijuana and his girlfriend is trying her best to pull him away from that lifestyle. Shortly after their conversation, Oscar and Sophina's daughter knocks at their bedroom door and ends up sleeping with her parents. Just before the scene ends, Oscar calls his mom to wish her a happy birthday.

A few scenes later and Oscar is in his car on his way to Farmer Joe's, a local grocery store in his town. He is grabbing some food for his mother's birthday and for New Year's Day. In this scene, I realized just how reckless Oscar was. His mother asks him if he is using his earpiece while driving (obviously to avoid any sort of distractions or losing control by only using one hand). He lies at first then scrambles around in the junk of his car, while still driving) and manages to hold his phone under his beanie. Smart guy, huh? Definitely not the smartest.

Oscar finally gets to the grocery store and quickly goes to the seafood/meat section in the back. I find out that this is where Oscar "works" until a couple of minutes into the scene and Oscar is talking to his old boss, trying to get his job back. Bummer. Something else I found out is how selfless Oscar is.

Oscar goes out of his way to help the woman pictured above. She is clueless as to which type of fish she should fry for her boyfriend and his friends. Oscar then decides to call his grandmother and ask her for help and after two very long minutes, a decision is made on the fish. Go, Grandma Bonnie!

Oscar then drives back home and gets a phone call from his sister who is asking to borrow money for rent. Oscar, unfortunately, is already struggling to pay his own bills with the money he does not make anymore. So, his solution (in my opinion) is not the best. He calls one of his friends and asks him if they are interested in buying some weed and they quickly come to a plan of meeting near the bay. 

On his way to meet up with his friend, Oscar stops at a gas station to fill up his tank and a stray dog appears. Obviously, as you can see in the photo, Oscar is very friendly with the dog as the dog is with Oscar. This is the first sign of foreshadowing. This dog looks like the typical "vicious" dog. Instead, it is harmless and adorable in its own way, just like Oscar. Oscar never has the intention to hurt someone and neither does this precious dog.

As soon as Oscar turns his back on the dog and the dog walks away, it gets hit by a car. Not only does the driver not get out of the car, but he/she speeds off as if nothing happened. Oscar runs over to the dog and moves him to the sidewalk where the dog begins to bleed out. Oscar can do nothing but watch.
When Oscar finally reaches the water, he stands out on the rocks and has a flashback to last year when he was in a penitentiary. His mother, of course, would visit him frequently until this visit goes wrong. Another inmate walks by and makes a nasty comment that causes Oscar to get furious and almost out of control. This shows the angry side to Oscar which clearly shows how aggressive he can be. His mother tells him he needs to change his ways and that she will not be returning for another visit. In my opinion, he deserved what he got from his mother. No man should ever abandon the woman in his life for something that he will always regret.

Fast forward to the middle of the movie where Oscar is putting his daughter to sleep before he goes out.

As much as people may think that Oscar is a bad guy, he does not try to be. He has no intention of hurting anyone or leaving his family. All he wants is to keep the three women in his life happy. 

Oscar then takes a train with his girlfriend and his friends to celebrate New Years and, of course, a fight breaks out in the train that involves Oscar.

As always, the cops get out of control and take the first group of black males that they see. It is not a surprise to me that this may have been the first footage that sparked the "movement" of recording cops that are abusing their rights and power.

At this point in the movie, everyone is acting a little out of their comfort zone. The cops are arresting two of the four men for doing nothing but trying to have a night out. Oscar is being held down by two different officers on the floor and shortly after he is being held down, Oscar gets shot in the back.

As an officer, you should know the difference between a gun and a taser. In this screenshot of the movie, the officer is CLEARLY holding a gun. The fact that he has a 3-second window to realize what is in his hands infuriates me. The biggest difference between a gun and a taser is the weight difference. Obviously, this cop did not know how to handle the situation and he ended up killing an innocent man.

The rest of the movie goes on about how the doctor's could not save Oscar and how the cop had minimum punishments. If this is not enough proof that police brutality is real then I do not know what else the government needs to see in order to realize that the power in this country is corrupt. This movie has to be the most intense and the most honest piece of work that someone could put together. Most true-stories only impact a certain amount of lives. This true story will impact the entire world to the point where phones are pulled out in seconds when a cop shows his/her face. Black lives matter and police brutality is real. There is no question. This movie is, hands-down, the best representation of both.


  1. Wow this is such a descriptive analysis that I feel like I have just watched the whole thing. By your description, it seemed like the whole movie was describing his life and how he was attempting to fix it, then bam, he dies at the hands of a reckless cop. Great analysis.

  2. Such a well written review! You killed me at the dog part :( but your level of detail to things is incredible! Nice job

  3. Great summary for a great movie! I've seen it twice, solid choice

  4. This movie is one of the best ones I've seen. What a well written review

  5. I enjoyed the review even if I haven't watched the movie. I feel that police brutality is still rampant and we need more movies like these to open the eyes of the public to this problem.