when they were fifteen, they were both in New York City, and they went out for
a dinner. Plimpton ordered soft-shell
crabs. A horrified River abruptly left the restaurant. When Plimpton followed
him, she found him walking down Park Avenue, crying.
‘’I love you so much – why?’’ he wept. He was devastated that she
was eating animals, but even more, he was deeply wounded that he hadn’t been
able to convince her that veganism was the better, more moral path.
‘’I love him for that’’, Plimpton said. ‘’For his dramatic desire that we share
every belief, that I be with him all the way.’’
from Last Night At The Viper Room by
“He’s already being made into a martyr, he’s become a metaphor for a fallen angel, a messiah. He wasn’t. He was just a boy, a very good-hearted boy who was very fucked-up and had no idea how to implement his good intentions. I don’t want to be comforted by his death. I think it’s right that I’m angry about it, angry at the people who helped him stay sick, and angry at River.“
Martha Plimpton on River’s death for “Esquire”, March 1994
“River doesn’t have a false bone in his body,” says the director Sidney Lumet of Phoenix’s performance in Running On Empty, soon to be released over here. “He can’t utter a false line. He stopped in the middle of one scene while we were shooting and said, ‘This feels fake to me.’ I listened again. He was right. I cut the scene. So long as River follows his instincts, takes stuff he believes in, there’ll be no stopping him. I first saw him in Stand By Me and there was such an extraordinary purity about him.’’
- Sidney Lumet about River for The Face, July 1989.