29 Days Of Black History – Day 28: Fruitvale Station

Release Date: 7/12/13
Genre:  Drama/Biography
Rating:  R
Running Time: 85 mins.
Studio: The Weinstein Company
Director: Ryan Coogler
Cast: Michael B. Jordan (Oscar Grant)
Melonie Diaz (Sophina)
Octavia Spencer (Wanda)
Kevin Durand (Officer Caruso)
Chad Michael Murray (Officer Ingram)
Story:  Based on the events leading up to the death of Oscar Grant, a young man who was killed in 2009 by BART police officer Johannes Mehserle at the Fruitvale district station of the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system in Oaklandrue.

The movie begins with the actual footage of Oscar Grant and his friends being detained by the BART Police at the Fruitvale BART station in Oakland on January 1, 2009, at 2:15 a.m. right before the shooting.  The film shows Grant and his girlfriend Sophina arguing about Grant’s recent infidelity. It later shows Grant unsuccessfully attempting to get his job back at the grocery store and attends a birthday party for his mother. He agrees to take the BART train to see fireworks and other New Year’s festivities in San Francisco since she is worried about him driving.

On the return train a fight breaks out and the BART police respond to the scene. Grant is among the passengers the BART police attempt to arrest. While being restrained by officers Caruso and Ingram, Grant is shot in the back by Ingram. He is rushed to the hospital, where he dies in surgery.

 

Title cards at the end describe the aftermath: Grant’s killing sparked a series of protests and riots across the city and that the incident was recorded by several witnesses, either by cell phone or video camera. The BART Police officers involved were fired and “Ingram” (the officers’ names were changed) was later tried and found guilty of involuntary manslaughter, claiming he mistook his gun for his Taser, and served an 11-month sentence. There is also footage of a gathering of people celebrating Grant’s life on New Year’s Day 2013 with the real-life, older Tatiana (Grant’s daughter) standing among them.  Source(s):  Wikipedia; IMDB.