How much do you remember about the movie The Grapes of Wrath?


By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: 20th Century Fox

About This Quiz

On the dusty plains of America, families struggle for survival at every turn. One man and his extended family set off for what they hope are greener pastures. How much do you remember about the movie "The Grapes of Wrath"?

The movie takes place during which major world event?

In the 1930s, the Great Depression sent millions of families into a financial death spiral. They don't know it just yet, but Tom Joad's family has a tough road ahead of them.


As the movie begins, we meet the man named Tom Joad. What are his circumstances?

Tom is a man with a seriously dangerous temper. He's just been released from prison after serving four years behind bars.


Tom Joad was convicted of which crime?

During a local dance, a man stabbed Tom with a knife. He responded by killing the aggressor with a shovel.


Upon his release from prison, Tom hitchhikes toward his family farm. On the way, he runs into a man named Casy, who is a former ______.

Casy is a former preacher who has given up on his faith in God. He is drawn to his baser instincts but still fights to be a man of higher principles.


Casy and Tom head on down the road together. When they finally reach the family farm, what do they find?

The two travelers brave dusty roads until they reach the Joad family farm. There's just one problem. The place has been abandoned and there's some random guy squatting on the property.


Tom's family is nowhere to be found. What happened to them?

Like so many other families during the Depression, the Joad family couldn't make ends meet. They've been evicted from the farm and forced off of the property.


Who is forcing families out of the farms that they've held for generations?

Families that have had their farms for decades are suffering due to the economic meltdown. Banks are forcing people off of their properties and into uncertain futures with few financial prospects.


Tom catches up to his family, and they tell him they are packing to leave the next day. Where are they going?

The Joads have given up on their lives in Oklahoma. They're heading west, where they hope to find more opportunities for themselves.


There are eight people in the Joad family, and Casy decides to join them, too. How do they plan to travel?

The Joads own a dilapidated old truck. They squeeze nine people and their few earthly possessions into the truck and start creeping down the primitive roads alongside other desperate families.


The trip is dusty and arduous. Which family member soon dies?

Grandpa didn't even want to make the trip. And his elderly body isn't up for the adventure. He dies not long after the journey begins.


Grandpa dies. What happens to him?

Grandpa is very old, and he suffers a stroke. The family buries him with a page of their Bible so that if his body is found, the authorities won't think it was a homicide.


At a campsite, the Joads meet a man who has already been out West. What does he say about the West?

The Joads feel their hearts sink when they tell the man they are looking for better lives in the West. He says he's already been there and that there are no jobs.


The family is traveling along a famous road to California. Which road is it?

The family is driving along the famed Highway 66. Back in the 30s, it wasn't a tourist destination, it was a vital (but rough) route in the Southwest.


Route 66 is a hard road in the 30s. What do the Joads see all along the highway?

The combination of rundown vehicles and impoverished families isn't a good one. There are abandoned vehicles all along the roadside.


Many desperate migrant workers are traveling from Oklahoma to California. What's the common nickname for these folks?

The migrant workers are called "Okies." In real life, the Okies suffered and suffered as they made the hard trip to California. Many of them simply gave up.


The Joad family finally arrives at a camp filled with more transient workers. What's the status of these workers?

Tom and his family wander into a camp for migrant workers. The sight is something to behold. The camp is filled with starving people, including many children.


The starving camp (like many of the era) also has a famous nickname. What's it called?

During the Depression, many migrant camps were called Hoovervilles. It was a derogatory term referring to the failed policies of President Herbert Hoover's administration.


The "grapes" in "The Grapes of Wrath" represent _____.

The grapes, a symbol of California (and potential grape-picking work) are a symbol of hope. But they also represent the bitterness of empty hope.


A man in a fancy car shows up at the camp. What does he say to the migrant workers?

The suspicious-looking man says that he has jobs. The workers, though, demand proof that he's actually paying people who do the labor. The situation turns into a violent confrontation and the Joads must leave.


The Joads flee to a government-operated migrant worker camp. What are the conditions like at the "Weedpatch" camp?

Compared to other migrant camps, Weedpatch is pretty nice. It has working toilets and even guards to keep the peace.


Tom finally finds work at the Weedpatch camp. What job does he perform?

Tom gets a (very) low-paying job picking peaches. He's making just five cents per barrel, a sum that's barely enough to buy food for his family.


Outside the Weedpatch camp, Tom sees picketers who are protesting. What issue are they protesting?

The picketers are angry about the incredibly unfair low wages being paid to poor workers. They want fair pay for the labor they're performing.


Casy is one of the protesters. What happens to Casy during a secret meeting?

The camp guards locate the protesters while they're meeting with Tom to discuss the issue of low wages. The encounter becomes violent, and Casy is killed.


Tom kills the camp guard who murdered Casy. How?

Tom's old temper flares up again. He wields a pick ax and kills the guard. Now, the Joad family must once again flee.


Camp guards swarm Weedpatch in search of Tom. How do the Joads sneak Tom out of the camp?

No one knows what the camp guards will do to a man who killed one of their own. The family wedges Tom between two mattresses and drives out of the camp.


Winter settles over California. The migrant workers are stuck facing _____.

The impoverished migrants, virtually exposed to the elements, are now forced to face heavy rains. Flooding imperils their shanties and their lives.


How do the rains affect the migrants' employment prospects?

The rampant rains and flooding bring a sudden end to the crop-picking season. What little work there was is now gone.


The desperate Joads wind up living in a ______.

Tom finds an abandoned railroad boxcar. The family makes a home in this humble boxcar, even though it's at risk of flooding.


As the movie ends, Tom vows that he will fight ______.

After witnessing inequality and unfairness throughout his journey, Tom vows to fight social injustice wherever he finds it. The Joads set aside their fears and plunge forward once more, hopeful for the future.


"The Grapes of Wrath" is a 1940 film directed by John Ford. Who had the starring role?

Henry Fonda plays the part of Tom Joad in one of Ford's masterpieces. The movie is based on a novel by John Steinbeck.


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