Cincinnati Babyhead

Speaks his mind on music & movies!

Movie – Fools Parade



It’s the dirty 30’s and hard times. Three cons are released from Glory State Prison. They are driven to the train station by by Captain Council a prison employee.  He gives them his memorized spiel, flavored with his religious bible punching menacing overtones.  The gist of the message is ex-cons are not welcome to stay around Glory. He tries to get the youngest con to run hoping he will so he can shoot him. Manny the oldest con assures Council that they have no intentions on staying in Glory, he has served 40 years and has a cheuqe for over 20 grand which he earned doing his time. With his two friends he plans on going straight and opening a general store in another town.

On the train Manny discovers that his cheque is only cash-able back at the Glory bank. At the same time Council and a couple accomplices are at the next station waiting for Manny and his friends.  The plan is to kill them and steal the money. Their plan goes sideways but three ex cons still have to get back to Glory to cash the cheque with a crazy man after them.

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CB used to hit a lot of Saturday afternoon matinees. I remember getting settled in for this one. I was caught up in the story right away. There are so many good things about the film that CB could overlook a few flaws. The story is simple. Cash a check without getting killed. But the thing that captured me was the performances.  Jimmy Stewart is just flat out great. He plays Manny right down the middle. Doesn’t effect any cliches that usually are done with ex cons.  But you do believe there is a nasty side to him, that he is used to violence.  He’s older but he’s had to survive in a violent place.

CB grew up watching a lot of movies and it felt like Strother Martin and George Kennedy were in them all. There should be some kind of award for Strother for his body of work.  He plays another one of his memorable characters. Giving his usual one of a kind support.  I love the guy.  George Kennedy as Council plays one of CB’s favorite screen bad guys.  Big, ugly, sweaty, mean and bat shit crazy.  You believe every second of him on screen.  A head full of scripture and his feet encased in white sneakers that are to small.  No wonder he’s nuts.  Great work George!  An all time nasty.  Mike Kellin and Morgan Paull (Junior, ice sucking radio singer) as his two cohorts are pretty good also. Kurt Russell rounds out the cast as the young con that Council wants a piece of.

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That’s it.  Good little film.  Entertaining with memorable characters.  So hop on a train and go on a ‘Fools Parade’ and don’t let that big sweaty psycho gettcha.

‘God uses the great ones and the bad ones use God”

7 comments on “Movie – Fools Parade

  1. J.
    April 8, 2018

    I’ve never seen this one, either!

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 8, 2018

      George Kennedy is up there for mayor of “Creepsville”
      (Oh by the way I stumbled onto Blind Melon’s ‘The Pusher’, yeah I really liked it and will be diving into some more)

      Liked by 1 person

      • J.
        April 8, 2018

        I’ll check this one out… another added to the list!

        (The Pusher is terrific, eh? In fact, the Nico album that it’s from is pretty great – John Sinclair is brilliant, too).


  2. Yeah, Another Blogger
    April 8, 2018

    CB, this film is a new one on me. It sound good. If I come across it one of these days I’ll watch it. You’re right about George Kennedy. Bat shit crazy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 8, 2018

      Something about bent religious villains. I don’t know where Kennedy was pulling it from but it’s worth the price of admission. Yeah it’s a small under the radar film Neil, but it had enough going on to keep me watching.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jim S.
    April 8, 2018

    I have never even remotely come close to hearing of this. A complete and utter mystery.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      April 8, 2018

      I just dropped a comment on your Joel take. It must have been simultaneous. ‘Fools Parade’ might be a little more light weight than CB’s usual fare but like I said in the piece, Kennedy (all time deranged whack job) and Strother always did if for me. They don’t make actors like that any more Doc.


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This entry was posted on April 8, 2018 by in 1971 film, Drama, George Kennedy, James Stewart, Strother Martin and tagged , .


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