BBC Culture

Talking Movies

Fruitvale Station: An antidote to Hollywood Fantasy?

Fruitvale Station won accolades when it played at the Cannes and Sundance Film Festivals. Tom Brook reports on the low-budget film getting a lot of attention.

Twenty-six-year-old director Ryan Coogler’s first film is based on the real-life shooting that took place on a station platform at Fruitvale, California on 1 January 2009.

The film begins with footage of the incident, captured on a mobile phone, in which police shot 22-year-old Oscar Grant dead after an incident on a train. Fruitvale Station is a relationship drama that deals with the issue of fatal encounters between the US police and young African-American men.

Shot for less than $1m, the film shows that critics can be receptive to grittier, low-budget alternatives to Hollywood’s usual fare.

If you would like to comment on this story or anything else you have seen on BBC Culture, head over to our Facebook page or message us on Twitter.