Fruitvale Station: In Theaters Nationwide this Friday

By Melvin Browne

4c3072f6f34c11e28abf22000a1f9bf5_7With just a limited release “Fruitvale Station” has achieved rave reviews from celebrities and film critics alike. Director Ryan Coogler’s film is the winner of both Grand Jury Prize for dramatic feature and the Audience Award for the U.S. dramatic film from the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. Fruitvale Station is based on a true story about Oscar Grant (Michael B. Jordan), a 22-year-old Bay area resident who wakes up on the morning of December 31, 2008 and sensed it would not be a regular day.

Not sure what it is, he takes it as a sign to get a head start on his resolutions: being a better son to his mother (Octavia Spencer), whose birthday falls on New Year’s Eve, being a better partner to his girlfriend Sophina (Melonie Diaz), who he hasn’t been completely honest with as of late, and being a better father to Tatiana (Ariana Neal), their beautiful four year-old daughter. Crossing paths with friends, family and strangers, Oscar starts out well, as the day goes on, he realizes that changes are not going to come easily. His resolve takes a tragic turn, however, when BART officers shoot him in cold blood at the Fruitvale subway stop on New Year’s Day. Oscar’s life and tragic death would shake the Bay Area – and the entire nation – to its very core.

In a time where young men are being murdered by “local enforcement”, this film could not have come at a better time. “Fruitvale Station” goes from limited to full nationwide release this coming Friday, July 26th. If you cannot wait till then, check out the limited release cities below as well as the Trailer and Photos from the film.

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A Night with the Oscars

By Stephfon Guidry

The red carpet was glittering, sparkling, and all a glow with celebrities in rare form for the 84th Annual Academy Awards, with host Billy Crystal. The actors, directors, filmmakers, and technicians became a sea of talent for the night dressed in old Hollywood glamour and waiting with bated breath on who will win. A night of firsts was the theme this year as many of the nominees and the winners were firsts in their category or first to a different type of role. Billy Crystal gave the audience more than enough to chat and chuckle about all night as an amazing host. The featurettes of a milieu of veteran and fledgling actors on their stories about what it was like to watch a movie and experience its change.

Of the many Oscar winners, Octavia Spencer’s win for Best Supporting Actress (only the 5th African American woman in history) for the Help as Millie pleasing everyone in the audience as they gave a standing ovation.  Sarah Ann Hughes report,Choking back tears, Spencer was cut off before she was able to finish her speech: “I’m wrapping up. I’m sorry. I am freaking out. Thank you, world.” (Washington Post.com) The biggest winners of the night were the movies The Artist and Hugo. The Artist was a silent film with its setting cultured in the classic art of music and film meshed with great acting. The Artist won Best Picture, Best Actor in the Leading Role, Directing, Costume Design, and Music (Original Score). Hugo was a live action film from the imagination of Martin Scoresese that brought to life a magical journey of a boy and automaton. Hugo took home the awards for Best Cinematography, Art Direction, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Visual Effects. Sean “P. Diddy” Combs took home his first Academy Award with Undefeated winning for Documentary Feature. Meryl Streep a veteran to the screen and the Oscars took home Best Actress in the Leading Role for her magnificent portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady.

The 84th Annual Oscars brought yet another year of talent and amazing film to be address with class and appreciation. Until next year…