Ernest Goes to Jail 

Last Updated on: October 18th, 2023

Ernest Goes to Jail

“Ernest Goes to Jail” is a comedy film released in 1990 and directed by John R. Cherry III. The movie stars Jim Varney as the lovable character Ernest P. Worrell, known for his humorous and bumbling antics.

In this installment of the Ernest film series, Ernest works as a janitor at a bank and dreams of becoming a security guard. However, his clumsiness and naivety often get in the way of his ambitions. One day, a mix-up at the bank leads to Ernest being mistaken for an escaped convict named Felix Nash, who happens to look exactly like him.

The mistaken identity lands Ernest in jail, where he must navigate the dangerous world of prison life. While there, he encounters a ruthless criminal named Mr. Nash, who is the real culprit behind the bank robbery. As the plot unfolds, Ernest finds himself switching places with the real convict and must use his wits and comedic ingenuity to outsmart the criminals and prove his innocence.

Throughout the film, Ernest’s character provides a source of comic relief as he gets into various hilarious situations, often involving slapstick and physical comedy. Jim Varney’s portrayal of Ernest is both endearing and comical, making the character a fan favorite.

“Ernest Goes to Jail” follows the traditional formula of the Ernest films, blending humor, adventure, and heartwarming moments. The film’s comedic elements, combined with its lighthearted storyline, make it suitable for audiences of all ages.

The movie’s success can be attributed to Jim Varney’s talent as a comedic actor and the charm of the Ernest character. His ability to portray a lovable and clumsy everyman resonated with audiences, leading to a series of successful Ernest films.

“Ernest Goes to Jail” is a fun and entertaining family comedy that showcases Jim Varney’s comedic talents and the enduring appeal of the Ernest character. With its mix of humor and adventure, the film continues to be a beloved classic among fans of family-friendly entertainment.

Ernest Goes to Jail 

Additional Details


  • Jim Varney: Ernest P. Worrell, Felix Nash, Auntie Nelda
  • Gailard Sartain: Chuck
  • Bill Byrge: Bobby
  • Barbara Tyson: Charlotte Sparrow
  • Barry Scott: Rubin Bartlett
  • Randall “Tex” Cobb: Lyle
  • Dan Leegant: Oscar Pendlesmythe
  • Charles Napier: Warden Carmichael
  • Jackie Welch: Judge
  • Jim Conrad: Eddie
  • Emily Corbishdale: Betty McGee
  • Andy Stahl: Jerry
  • Bob Babbitt: Washing Con
  • Myke R. Mueller: Vinnie
  • Chambers Stevens: Jury Man
  • Buck Ford: Rubin’s attorney


  • Director: John Cherry
  • Producer: Martin Erlichman
  • Music: Bruce Arntson and Kirby Shelstad

Movie Trailer:

About the Author

Craig Smith
I am founder and editor of My passion for all things Disney goes pretty far back to my first trip to Walt Disney World in the mid-80's. I have since returned to the magical place more than 20 times. I started this site when I came to the realization that I spent a significant portion of my day reading articles about Disney and watching Disney content with my 8-year old, so it made sense that I would start sharing some of what I read and see and building a little community around it. Other interests include 80's nostalgia, vintage toys, video games, LEGO, Star Wars and tech gadgets. Other sites include DMR and