At approximately 9.15am on January 1, 2009, Oscar Grant III died on the operating table in Oakland, California.
Several hours earlier, the young black man and his friends were detained by police at Fruitvale Station on the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system that serves San Francisco. During chaotic scenes on the platform, one of the officers shot Grant in the back.
Footage captured by witnesses on mobile phones and cameras sparked protests across the city.
Fruitvale Station dramatises the final 24 hours in the life of Grant (Michael B Jordan), recounted in chronologically except for a single emotionally devastating flashback in which the young man recalls a visit from his mother Wanda (Octavia Spencer) to San Quentin Correctional Facility to hammer home the damage he is doing to his young daughter Tatiana (Ariana Neal).
Cooger’s film has a relentless sense of momentum and won’t be deviated from its tragic course, no matter how hard we will it.
Jordan is terrific in the lead role, while Diaz is luminous and Oscar winner Spencer is mesmerising.