Fruitvale Station is an emotional re-telling of a true to life story with great performances from the cast. Micheal B. Jordan, Octavia Spencer, and Melonie Diaz were great. The movie is shot in a quasi-documentary style which made the film dynamic and the crucial scenes effective.
On the other hand, the film is obviously rigged to portray the lead as a martyr. Fruitvale Station settles with a safe and positive portrayal – he cries for a stray dog in the middle of the street, starts a dance party on the train, he can’t pay the rent but gives free drugs. And of course, our hero is about to turn his life around just before tragedy strikes.
Fruitvale Station will no doubt affect a lot of people but in close inspection, it’s emotionally manipulative. The victim’s family deserves to mourn their loss, but the film plays fast and loose about the facts of the incident.
Whatever earnestness in this movie is lost because it isn’t a nuanced drama. You can’t help but think that it’s another Oscar-bait from the Weinstein Company who are taking advantage of the sympathy towards Oscar Grant.
Fruitvale Station is a contrived emotionally manipulative tribute masquerading as a character study.