Apr 26, 2010

"In simplicity there is truth." - River Phoenix

Didn't see any films today... Today was a River day. A good day! (I'm just going to sprinkle these photos everywhere, because MAN was someone a natural in front of the camera.)

I walked to the campus to force myself to finnish my essay (and I did!). Last time I went to the campus there was much more snow the sea was still frozen... Not anymore! It was so pretty there, I love that our campus is by the sea. Sun was shining and it was amazingly warm and I played my feel-good-songs, like Downtown and Walking on Sunshine, in repeat, and I had to fight myself not to smile like an idiot all the time.

At home I dedicated my day mostly to River Phoenix. First, I'm falling in love with that name more and more all the time! God bless the Hippie parents, look at these names: River, Rain, Joaquin, Liberty, Summer... Ah! I would totally name my children like that if I lived in an English speaking country. (Doesn't work here, really.... Joki Jokinen. Sade Virtanen. Vapaus Vanhanen. Kesä Mansikkamäki. Ridiculous. Shame, though.) Where was I...? I've had River by Joni Mitchell stuck in my head half of the day. I bet River sometimes wished he had a river he could skate away on. If not in those words.

I watched a biography/tribute show I found on Youtube. I'll link it here, in case someone's interested. It's in five parts, together about 45 minutes long.

(Damn, I'm a technical genious for managing to do that!) I learned a lot about River. Shame to say, pretty much all I knew before was the same majority of people (those who have heard of him, I mean) do: he was in Stand by Me and he died young. His backgroung is very interesting, the cult and being smuggled back to America... And I so need to find more of his movies! It's not easy, though, in this godforsaken country (sorry. I didn't mean it. Oi Maamme Suomi ja sitä rataa). It was both sad and respectable, how the really HATED being a celebrity. The whole celebrity culture is really very idiotic and so so shallow, and I can't say I've done anything to stop it... Vice versa. But I could say River changed my point of view a bit. That side of the industry is just... ugh. And yes, I love the Oscars and all that stuff, but let's face it. Most of that is just pretending and showing off and so phony and ridiculous spending of money. (Still, I'm watching next year. Again. No doubt. Am I a hypocrite or what... Hah.)

More about River. Watching that biography also made me feel that I should become a vegeterian (not that I will do that, either), stop buying things I don't need (as if) and go pat my roommate's cat on the back (that I might do... as soon as I get up). Point is that he's inspiring. (Not sure if I should write was or is... I'm confused. Sure he's dead, but he inspires me now, so...? Oh, anyway...) And the way he lived his life is/was/whatever very admirable. He had princibles he believed in, and lived according to them. Like when filming some movie he demanded clothes not made of animal skin. Even though at that point he really wasn't in a place where you could make demands, he got what he wanted, because others saw something special in him, even then.

(Lovelovelove that picture! One not so serious. Though he does EXCELENT serious, too.) And then he's death... First I'd like to quote what Leonardo Dicaprio said in an article in Esquire "on the night River Phoenix died":

"When I was eighteen, River Phoenix was far and away my hero. Think of all those early great performances — My Own Private Idaho. Stand by Me. I always wanted to meet him. One night, I was at this Halloween party, and he passed me. He was beyond pale — he looked white. Before I got a chance to say hello, he was gone, driving off to the Viper Room, where he fell over and died. That's a lesson."

I read lots of comments saying that Leo's words were somehow offensive and inappropriate and I sort of get their point. I mean it is kind of wrong that everyone always talks about River's death insted of his life. And sure, it's a bit dramatic and so on, but I really don't mind that comment. After all, it is quite a coincidence that Leo happened to see his hero on the night of his death. World loves drama and stories like that. I can't deny that I had some shivers when I first read that.

Anyway, I don't have much more to say about his death. It was very very very unfortunate and tragic and unfair and wrong and sad. What I understood was that he didn't take that stuff for kicks, he took it to cope. World is unfair sometimes, that's something you can't get over.

Oh and my faith in humanity improved an inch. That paparazzi, who could've taken a million dollar picture, but called 911 instead. "I'm a human being before I'm a photographer." I'd lift my hat if I had one. Not everyone would've acted similarly.

Now I should somehow summarise the greatness and uniqueness of River Phoenix. And... I can't really. Well, you know. But I really need to watch My Own Private Idaho (a great name for a movie by the way!) again, because first time I was just too confused about the story, I couldn't concentrate on River's performance. Here's one more picture, possibly my favorite of those I found today.

I truly am sorry but I will conclude my River Phoenix entry in a very inappropriate way. But come on, girls, take a look at that hair! Next to that, Robert Pattinson is, well, bald! In your face, R-Pattz!!!

(Again, sorry.)


stand said...

Yes we all need River days:)
enjoyed reading this.
visit my stand by me blogg:

Anonymous said...

mun englannin taidoilla oli ehkä hieman vaikeeta lukee tekstiä, mutta onnistuin ihan hyvin :D

River, niin hieno ihminen, niin kiltti ja muita ajatteleva persoona. Genius. En löydä edes sanoja. :]