Jaan Uhelszki, MOJO, November 1996
IT'S A LAZY MONDAY NIGHT IN LOS ANGELES, AND A few blocks east of Beverly Hills an inconspicuous sign adorns a shadowy building, quietly proclaiming it the Viper Room. The name sounds familiar. Didn't that actor River Phoenix spend his last night on earth here, before stumbling out onto the street in a drugged stupor from which he never awoke? Surveying this respectable stretch of Los Angeles' Sunset Strip, it's hard to imagine that beautiful, haunting face pressed against the unforgiving cement.
Total word count of piece: 3489