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Ernest Goes to Jail
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Reviews & Ratings for
Ernest Goes to Jail More at IMDbPro »

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13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Funny, Harmless, Silly, Stupid, Safe, etc.

6/10
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States
6 January 2007

This "Ernest film" is a typically silly, stupid-at-times one but still wholesome in its humor and sometimes very funny.

The best moments in here, at least the ones that made me laugh hardest, were in the bank with Jim Varney ("Ernest") and a runaway vacuum cleaner. Yes, there is a lot of juvenile humor in here, but the totally-innocent lightweight humor is fun.

Varney also does some imitations in here, and he's quite good at it. He's done this in several of his movies and it is always entertaining.

For those wondering about their young kids watching this, there is absolutely no offensive language in this movie, too. Now that's a rarity for a 1990 film.

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9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Jim Varney's Best Ever!!!

Author: (teenwolf97@aol.com) from Tuscaloosa, AL
25 May 2000

Ernest Goes To Jail is the 3rd installment in the popular series, and in my humble opinion, the best. Jim Varney brings so much humor and character to the table in whatever he is in. So many jokes in the Ernest movies I did not get as a child, however, after viewing them as adults, I find them even more funny. Ernest was actually quoting Shakespeare and his arrogant soliloquies were classic. Varney shines in this movie:doing all the different voices, faces, and characters we have grown to love. What I really like about this film is his portrayal of Mr. Nash,the villain. Jim Varney does a complete 180 turn from his bumbling, idiotic Ernest P. Worrell. The look, the voice, and the attitude are very different from the other character, which is a what a good actor should do if playing 2 roles. Varney pulls them both off remarkably well. Also Chuck and Bobby provide great slapstick humor as always, and this film is a comedy classic that can be viewed by all ages. Jim Varney left this old world way too fast, but he also left us comic treasures in film such as this movie.

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Jim Varney at his finest!!!

Author: dootuss from PA
4 October 2002

"Ernest Goes To Jail" is probably the BEST "Ernest" film ever made out of all of the films. Jim Varney once again gives us more laughs as he plays the idiotic Ernest P. Worrel. In the movie Ernest is assigned jury duty for a murder trial. Nash (who wants out of prison badly) the man who is on trial looks exactly like Ernest, and switches places with Ernest to escape from prison. So in the process, our rubber faced nit wit gets to spend some time in the slammer. Jim Varney once again does an excellent job as the bumbling fool Ernest P. Worrell as well as escaped criminal look a like Nash. I thought it was cool how Varney switched continuosly throughout the movie with the 2 characters. Overall this movie rules!!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Gotta love Varney

10/10
Author: bug76 from United States
25 March 2011

Some may say that people will get tired of Ernest. It's hard to believe. He's been gone for 11 years and there's still no sign of people forgetting Ernest. If people were tired of him much earlier on, why, I ask you, did Varney make 4,000 commercials? Yes, 4,000. I didn't add an extra 0 here. That's unheard of with any one else. Varney was the only one to reach cult status with 30 second ads. I don't even like commercials and I found his thoroughly entertaining. I loved them so much,I bought them on DVD. With that said, "Ernest Goes to Jail" is hilarious. And, we get to see him play bad-guy, Mr. Felix Nash-quite a difference from Ernest's goofball slap stick. Nash is far from Ernest, being organized, clever and mean. In this installment from the Ernest line, Varney shows off his God given rare talents. Looking in the mirror in jail, he tries to come off as Nash by using different voices and facial contortions. It never fails to make me laugh. The ink pen scene is classic. It's so funny watching him try to clean off the ink only to smear it worse all over his face. Plus, he gets electrocuted 4 times in this movie. "Hey,Vern! No one gets electrocuted like Varney, KnoWhutImean?" The beginning of the movie has Ernest trying to start the floor polisher only to have it take on a mind of its own by dragging Ernest all over the floor and up the wall. Ernest's screams are just adorable. Especially 4 minutes and 34 seconds into the movie. Any other jail movie would be loaded with violence and bad language and the fact is, I wouldn't care to watch them. This is probably the only jail movie that was free of vulgarity and was still a treat to watch. Varney made his Ernest movies kid friendly-for all ages to enjoy. C'mon, we all know that Ernest was Jim's true calling because mostly everyone refers to him as Ernest. And no one will ever be able to replace him. I know that Vern missed Ernest. He even left a note for Ernest at www.vernssuicidenote.blogspot.com. I've read it. It's quite humorous as well. When I first saw "Ernest Goes to Jail" at 14 when it first came out, I wanted a house like Ernest's, right down to that cool washer and dryer. The 'electric toothbrushes' would be pretty nice to have, too. Brush all your teeth at the same time in half the time. We all know that Jim paved the way for people like Jim Carrey and Larry the Cable Guy, but Varney kept it clean. Though, Jim Varney is still my number 1. Of course, with any Ernest movie, it will receive the highest rating possible.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The importance of being Ernest...

7/10
Author: Lee Eisenberg (lee.eisenberg.pdx@gmail.com) from Portland, Oregon, USA
29 May 2006

This time, the lovable dimwit gets summoned for jury duty, where a corrupt attorney notices that he looks like a jailbird who wants to break out, so the two get switched. Of course, most of the movie is a series of gags; in "Ernest Goes to Jail", most of the gags relate to electricity. I really liked the whole vacuum cleaner sequence early on. Overall, the point of the movie is just to have fun, and I'm sure that you will. This is possibly the ultimate movie that you watch with a bud. It's quite safe to say that Jim Varney will truly be missed. Knowwhaddamean? FYI: the only other cast member whom I recognized was Randall "Tex" Cobb, who played Lyle. You've surely seen him somewhere.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

All Hail Varney!

10/10
Author: melloyellobiafra from United States
24 March 2006

If I had to decide which was the best Ernest movie, and don't act like that sort of thing doesn't happen all time, it would be this one.

All of the Ernest movies are entertaining, but the best ones are the ones that have Jim Varney doing a number of different characters. Additionally, I am known to enjoy the comedy stylings of Bill Byrge and Gailard Sartain as brothers Chuck and Bobby Tulip. "Ernest Goes to Jail" contains all of those elements as well as a funny script and a supporting cast that features several beloved character actors.

And that is why I have chosen "Ernest Goes to Jail" as the king of all Ernest movies. Disagree with me if you must, but deep down you know I am right.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

The best of Jim Varney

7/10
Author: wgviper13 from St. Louis
19 September 2001

The last good Ernest movie, and the best at that. How can you not laugh at least once at this movie. The last line is a classic, as is Ernest's gangster impressions, his best moment on film. This has his best lines and is a crowning achievement among the brainless screwball comedies.

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Jail is more fun than camp, Who knew?

6/10
Author: Shawn Watson from The Penumbra
31 July 2014

Handyman Ernest is called up for jury duty where the crook on trial realizes that he's a doppleganger for his incarcerated boss. After a convoluted switch Ernest if behind bars while his evil counterpart Nash is working night security at the bank, planning to rob it and make moves on Ernest's girl.

It's a familiar plot, and the production values are not that great (what's with all the pink lighting in jail?) but Jim Varney's mugging and the story's eccentric imagination make it a fun watch. It's a tighter movie than Camp though, which I felt was a bit of a false start to his big screen adventures.

It's hard to believe Varney was only 40 at the time of filming, and that he'd only live another 10 years. As crass as the Ernest movies might be they are a constant reminder of an actor who's abilities were wide, but never got the recognition he deserved.

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Funny

6/10
Author: SanteeFats from United States
3 August 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Okay, this is another Ernest movie and a lot of people just don't like them because they think they are dumb. I like them because they are dumb. There is no pressure to follow a complex, involved plot, the gags are juvenile yet funny, and the end is always predictable with Ernest inadvertently winning the day. In this movie he actually gets to stretch himself by playing not only playing the insipid, bumbling character of Ernest but also the hard case gangster who he is the twin of. Jim Varney made a career (until his untimely death) out of playing Ernest and he did it well, after all look at how many Ernest movies are out there.

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Fun to Watch

Author: Michael (sfriend1) from Simpson, IL.
21 May 2003

You would think after two installments this series would be worn out. Somehow though Jim Varney and entertaining story lines makes this series continue to be successful and fun to watch. This time Bank Janitor Ernest goes to jail, swapping places with a look a like bank robber on death row named Nash. He must break out and stop Nash from robbing the bank he works at. Varney does a terrific job with the Nash character. I am waiting for this series to hit rock bottom, it sure hasn't happened yet.

Rating: B-

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