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Permanent Midnight (1998)

R  |   |  Biography, Drama, Romance  |  23 April 1999 (Iceland)
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Reviews: 54 user | 30 critic

Comedy writer Jerry Stahl, whose $6000-a-week heroin habit had him taking his infant daughter along on his drug runs and doing smack during TV script conferences. Departing detox, Stahl ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry Stahl
Phoenix Punk
Brad / Tim from Mr. Chompers
Craig Ziffer
Jerry at 16
Mary Thompson ...
Grandma Whittle
Allen from Mr. Chompers
Jana Farmer


Comedy writer Jerry Stahl, whose $6000-a-week heroin habit had him taking his infant daughter along on his drug runs and doing smack during TV script conferences. Departing detox, Stahl explores memories with survivor Kitty, who listens patiently to Stahl's flashback. Other women in Stahl's life are his British wife Sandra and his agent Vola. For the TV series "Mr. Chompers" (inspired by ALF), Stahl meets with sitcom exec Craig Ziffer and puppeteer Allen. For freaky freebasing, Stahl hangs with mumbler Nicky and druggie Gus. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive graphic drug use, strong sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

23 April 1999 (Iceland)  »

Also Known As:

A nap árnyékos oldalán  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$260,562 (USA) (18 September 1998)


$1,166,199 (USA) (6 November 1998)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Actor Charles Fleischer, best known for playing Roger Rabbit, has the small role of Allen from Mr. Chompers. According to the book, Permanent Midnight, Jerry Stahl wrote an unaired television pilot as a vehicle for Fleischer. See more »


When Jerry is at the methadone clinic, the doctor is checking boxes on a form he's filling out. The questions he asks Jerry do not match the boxes he checks. See more »


[first lines]
Jerry: You know what's mortifying? Smack is like the leisure suit of the nineties. Instead of wrecking dad's Buick on prom might, these little suburban fucks are coping habits and OD'ing in the rec room.
Kitty: And you're different, because?
Jerry: I never got to the prom.
See more »


Referenced in Family Guy: Business Guy (2009) See more »


Performed by Gomez
Written by Ian Ball (as Ball) / 'Paul Blackburn' (as Blackburn) / Thomas Gray (as Gray) / Benjamin Ottewell (as Attewell) / Oliver Peacock (as Peacock)
Produced by Gomez
Engineered by Ken Nelson
Published by Warner Chappell Music Ltd.
Courtesy of Virgin Records America, Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

A different type of film that I found to be interesting

Permanent Midnight is the autobiographical story of the life and times of Jerry Stahl. This was a movie that tested the boundaries of what could be shown on the movie screen. Ben Stiller's performance as Jerry Stahl was dramatic to say the least. Stiller's performance was excellent and really showed me the flipside of what could happen to somebody when they get hooked on drugs. The whole cast from Maria Bello to Elizabeth Hurley were solid support for the main character, Jerry Stahl. The real Jerry Stahl actually had a role, which surprised me, as Dr. Murphy from the drug rehabilitation clinic. Stahl recounts his life from a hotel room while having a sexual encounter he met while he was working at a restaurant drive-thru. The way that the director lays out the film is perfect; it is different than what I have seen before. The way Jerry Stahl recounts his life the way he did pleasantly surprised me. I warn anyone who wants to watch Permanent Midnight to brace themselves for extreme drug use by sticking needles in arms and sensual love scenes. I recommend this film for its stars' performances.

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