Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 43 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 161 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 43
  2. Negative: 0 out of 43
  1. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jul 11, 2013
    100
    At the age of 27 Mr. Coogler seems to have it all, and have it firmly in place a clearsighted take on his subject (no airbrushing of flaws or foibles here, just confident brush strokes by a mature artist); a spare, spontaneous style that can go beyond naturalism into a state of poetic grace, and a gift for getting, or allowing, superb actors to give flawless performances.
  2. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Jul 18, 2013
    100
    It shows us the everyday pressures and problems, the joys and pleasures, experienced by someone moving through life. And then that BART train pulls into Fruitvale, and the rest is history.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jul 26, 2013
    100
    Fruitvale Station is only the first in a string of civil-rights minded movies set to hit theaters this year -- contributing to what could be the most racially conscious award season in recent memory.
  4. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Jul 22, 2013
    88
    Michael B. Jordan (“Red Tails”) is never less than riveting as Oscar, and he has to be.
  5. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Jul 11, 2013
    80
    Mr. Coogler, with a ground-level, hand-held shooting style that sometimes evokes the spiritually alert naturalism of Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, has enough faith in his actors and in the intrinsic interest of the characters’ lives to keep overt sentimentality and messagemongering to a minimum.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Jul 12, 2013
    75
    The only character in the film who seems to have the requisite gravity is Oscar’s mother, Wanda (the marvelous Octavia Spencer), whose scene with her son in San Quentin is as hard-bitten as the rest of the film isn’t.
  7. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Jul 11, 2013
    40
    Coogler isn’t exactly an invisible hand. He pokes and prods his audience at every turn: Neither the false moments nor the powerful ones leave much mystery about how we’re supposed to feel.

See all 43 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 44
  2. Negative: 1 out of 44
  1. Aug 7, 2013
    10
    To put this in perspective I am a 19 year old pretty normal teenage boy. I don't cry at movies I mean who does that? Me an my friend had to go watch wolverine right after this movie just to get it out of our system. The movie is really slow and not much happens and you think it's boring until you realize that you just start relating to the main character because of how normal he is. And by the end of the movie you like him, you think he's a pretty decent guy who just had some bad things happen to him. I have never felt so sad after a movie ended. I really really felt it and I wanted to just cry. I have never been in a theater where everyone looked so sad.

    Bravo.
    Expand
  2. Aug 5, 2013
    10
    I'm not sure what else to say except just wow. This was a truly powerful film that's definitely worth a watch. It had me tearing up by the end. Michael B. Jordan was phenomenal. 10/10 Expand
  3. Jul 12, 2013
    10
    An emotionally draining experience that left the audience in silent, but in a good way. One of the best movies I've seen this year. Ryan Coogler has a true gift in making the audience invest in a character. Michael B. Jordan does a great job. Highly recommend. Expand
  4. Aug 5, 2013
    9
    A tragic and heartfelt indie flick. Michael B. Jordan should be the frontrunner for actor of the year thus far. Brilliant execution by Coogler makes it almost impossible for the audience to not feel an emotional tie to all of the characters. If you choose to take a ride on this emotional roller coaster you'll be rewarded with an awe inspiring piece of art. Expand
  5. Apr 2, 2014
    7
    amazing true story that will punch you in the gut and put you in the emotional state of frustration that these people are in. This movie has a 'real' feel to it and really puts you at the event. If you're not sure about watching it, just do it, you won't be dissapointed!

    Just my opinion
    Expand
  6. Nov 24, 2013
    7
    In an American film industry of recycled ideas, sequels and nostalgic masturbation over things men liked as kids [comic book movies, toy movies, etc], I have to give this a 7 for its importance, its freshness and its premise of looking at the man's life from several angles in 20-24 hours.
    Where I have to lower it to 7: some of the acting is mediocre at best, but that may very well stem from the main problem. That problem is the writing, which is sophomorically ironic in how it portrays everything the main character does that day. Everything is seen through a lens of "but he dies later!" in a forced or melodramatic way, such that it's hard to see the story as a true portrait.
    This major flaw aside, the movie's good and if you're interested in the subject matter, go see it. I'm looking forward to Coogler's next feature.
    Expand
  7. Aug 10, 2013
    4
    If this movie purported itself as a fictional story, I might give it a 9 or 10. It has incredible acting from the entire cast. Michael B. Jordan is a guaranteed star in the making (if he's not one already). The problem is that the filmmaker Ryan Coogler chose to make this about a true story and when you do that, your movie also has to be judged on whether it is an accurate reflection of said story. He doesn't shy away from the truth about Grant's troubled past, which is probably why so many unfamiliar with the case are willing to trust that he is not manipulating their emotions with omissions and fabrications. That said, I would expect professional reviewers to do a better job of questioning movies like this. While I am very sympathetic to its message, I think movies like this do a disservice to the cause if they are not deeply rooted in the truth. Expand

See all 44 User Reviews

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