If We Give You Three Character Names, Can You Tell Us the Movie They're From?

Olivia Cantor

Image: Color Force

About This Quiz

What's a great movie character for you? Is it the cute actor playing the hero? Is it the fierce female taking the lead? Or is it the scheming bad guy ready to take over the world? Who's your pick?

In filmmaking, characters are explicitly designed to provoke audiences. This is intentional, by the way. A great story won't stick with viewers if the characters supposed to carry them are weak. By weak, we mean they're not credible enough to tell the tale. Think about it: what made kiddo Kevin credible in "Home Alone" as he fought his enemies? He's got fantastic anti-burglar ideas for sure! But these are also ideas that kids might definitely think of in real life, right? Credible!

A character's main job is to bring us closer to the film's climax, plot point by plot point. If they don't appear believable enough to do this, then the story might fail. What do you think will happen if Tony and Maria caved into peer pressure and nipped their affection in the bud? No "West Side Story" for you, loves! 

Both villains and heroes should do their parts in pushing the film story forward. A villain's primary job is to prevent the hero from achieving their goal. A hero's goal, meanwhile, is to push against all odds, no matter what. They don't start out as heroes, though; they become heroic through their journey. Have they ever seen "Hancock" with Will Smith? That's a perfect example of what we're talking about here.  

Now that you know more about how heroes and villains are made, time to name them! We'll give you three at a time, and you tell us which film they're from, OK? Let's go!

In hunting down Buffalo Bill, Agent Clarice Starling asked for Dr. Hannibal Lecter's help. What film contained this plot?

Hannibal Lecter is one of the most memorable film characters to come out of the '90s silver screen due to his terrifying psychotic persona. Anthony Hopkins enacted this portrayal. Jodie Foster held her own as the relentless FBI agent Clarice Starling who had to engage Hannibal to solve a case.

Legolas looked to Gandalf for guidance to assist in Frodo Baggins' quest. What fantastic film showed their journey?

English author J.R.R. Tolkien already had a huge following for his book series called "The Lord of the Rings." New Zealand filmmaker Peter Jackson amped this up with his fantastic film versions of Tolkien's novels. To this day, you can visit the movie's location setups in his country.

Sarah Connor wants to protect her son John Connor from the T-1000 killer. Which futuristic story told their tale?

Arnold Schwarzenegger made killer cyborgs look cool and dangerous in 1984's "The Terminator." This character got reprogrammed to fight with the bad guys in "Terminator 2: Judgment Day." Linda Hamilton made toughie protective moms look bad in a good way in this film.

The Narrator introduced us to his friend Tyler Durden and lover Marla Singer. Where can you find them all?

American novelist Chuck Palahniuk created many unique and troubled characters in his books which Hollywood loves adopting to films. Brad Pitt portrayed one of his most popular characters named Tyler Durden from "The Fight Club."

Weird and wily women Dolores Umbridge and Bellatrix Lestrange baffled Luna Lovegood in which Harry Potter film?

As Harry Potter grew up, his tales became darker and grittier. This is evident in "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" where Harry and his classmates train themselves to fight Death Eaters. They also go head to head with evil adults like Dolores Umbridge and Bellatrix Lestrange.

Miss Moneypenny warned 007 to be careful of this guy Jaws. What film is this?

Many evil characters dogged James Bond in his quests; some of these villains became unforgettable for their unique traits. Jaws is one such character because he's such a massive guy with metal teeth to boot. Aside from appearing in "The Spy Who Loved Me," he battled 007 anew in "Moonraker."

Darth Vader told Luke Skywalker that he's his dad, as Yoda can attest. In which "Star Wars" episode can you find this scene?

Fans of "Star Wars" got a huge shock when Darth Vader revealed his real relationship with Luke Skywalker in "Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back." Luke immediately rejected the idea of being Darth Vader's son. "Return of the Jedi" heightened this father-son clash even more.

Vito Corleone loves his sons Michael and Sonny. What "family film" is this?

Behind the scenes reports mentioned that Robert Redford was originally considered to play Michael Corleone, Al Pacino's role in "The Godfather." Orson Welles and Laurence Olivier were also considered to play Vito Corleone. Marlon Brando had to do a screen test first before they gave the role to him.

Trinity and Morpheus showed Neo that "there is no spoon" in which sci-fi film?

Anime film lovers of the late '90s discussed how 1999's "The Matrix" had similar scenes to 1995's "Ghost in the Shell." The Wachowskis were very vocal about how this Mamoru Oshii film influenced their own.

In which "Avengers" film did Tony Stark order Vision to closely guard Wanda Maximoff?

Tony Stark is one Marvel Cinematic Universe character who can get overbearing at times. This was evident in "Captain America: Civil War" where he caused a faction between the Avengers. This paranoid tension led them to fight each other in this film.

Toto went along for the ride with Dorothy Gale as she encountered The Wicked Witch of the West. Where can you find them?

The lovely Judy Garland was already grown up when she portrayed teenager Dorothy Gail in "The Wizard of Oz." But audiences suspended their disbelief and went along for the stroll down the yellow brick road with her. It's now considered as one of the greatest movies ever made.

In which X-Men tale can you find Wolverine taking care of Charles Xavier while babysitting Laura?

"Logan" is a reimagining of the usual X-Men storyline; this one takes place in a more depressing future. Villains overthrew and eradicated the powerful good mutants here. The film started introducing newer mutants with the addition of Logan's biological daughter, Laura.

The boxer Balboa mourned for friend Creed who got defeated by Drago in which installment of this series?

The '80s Cold War seeped into the "Rocky" series when Rocky Balboa fought with a Soviet boxer named Ivan Drago. Balboa wanted to avenge Apollo Creed's death in the ring during his own fight with Drago. Dolph Lundgren played this villain; Carl Weathers was still Creed, and Stallone was still Rocky.

Groot, Rocket and Star-Lord are the one-named warriors of which MCU film?

Groot may not be a glib talker, but he's one of the most entertaining characters in "Guardians of the Galaxy." Vin Diesel provided the Groot voice recordings. He had to record several deliveries and intonations of the sentence "I am Groot" to differentiate the character's emotions.

The Katniss-Peeta-Gale love triangle unfurled in which dystopian film?

Suzanne Collins wrote the three novels in "The Hunger Games" series with Katniss narrating her thoughts and feelings. Readers knew exactly what she was feeling for Peeta Mellark and Gale Hawthorne. The film adaptations removed this narration and let the storyline unfold.

Andy owned and played with Woody and Buzz in which animated wonder?

Pixar Animated Studios was already making short animated films before the release of "Toy Story" in 1995. But this particular film brought prominence to the company in the '90s. The film used universal toys found in many American children's homes like toy soldiers and TV character action figures.

Scout and Jem were always curious of their neighbor Boo Radley in which Alabama-set film?

Harper Lee's novel entitled "To Kill A Mockingbird" won the 1961 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Horton Foote wrote its screenplay adaptation; he was also awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, but for later work. However, Foote received an Oscar award for Best Adapted Screenplay for it.

Kirk was at loggerheads with Spock sometimes, to Scotty's confusion, in which space adventure film?

According to CBS, the "Star Trek" films directed by J.J. Abrams are following the "Kelvin timeline." This reboot deviates from the previous timelines of other "Star Trek" franchises. The new name came from the USS Kelvin, the ship Kirk's father oversaw at the beginning of the 2009 film.

Tough guy Jules Winnfield and partner in crime Vincent Vega worked for Marsellus Wallace in which Tarantino film?

The 1992 film "Reservoir Dogs" is Quentin Tarantino's directorial debut; but "Pulp Fiction" made more headlines when it came out in 1994. It garnered the 1994 Palme d'Or or Golden Palm, the highest award given at the annual Cannes Film Festival. It also served as a comeback film for John Travolta.

Tris made friends with Four and Christina in which dystopian young adult film?

Shailene Woodley played Tris Prior while Ansel Elgort played her brother Caleb in "Divergent." Zoë Kravitz played her friend Christina in this 2014 film. Woodley and Elgort also played lovers in 2014's "The Fault in Our Stars" while Woodley and Kravitz played "neighbors" in HBO's "Big Little Lies."

Lt. Dan, Bubba and Jenny were all influential people in the life of which titular character?

"Forrest Gump" showed that people with "simpler minds" can also achieve great things. This was only evident in the 1994 film version, though. The 1986 book version by Winston Groom had darker and bitter characters than the ones portrayed in the film adaptation.

Batman rounded up Wonder Woman and Aquaman to help him in which comic book hero-laden film?

The 2017 film "Justice League" had Batman tap Wonder Woman to help him recruit teammates. Cyborg, The Flash and Aquaman all went onboard. One of their objectives was to revive Superman back from the dead.

Imperator Furiosa tried to escape from Immortan Joe, but Nux is always at her heels. In which post-apocalyptic film can you witness this chase?

The 2015 film "Mad Max: Fury Road" continued the post-apocalyptic tale by Australian director George Miller. The original "Max Max" from 1979 starred Mel Gibson in the lead. This newer project featured Tom Hardy portraying Max; Charlize Theron also co-starred as the tough driver Imperator Furiosa.

Witty kid Sam Witwicky becomes fast friends with Optimus Prime and Bumblebee in which sci-fi film?

"Transformers" started out as mecha toys in the '80s and became an animated TV series popular that decade. The live action version came in 2007 under the direction of Michael Bay. The latest Transformer film is the "Bumblebee" origin story released in 2018.

Which older film featured scientists Egon, Ray and Peter chasing scary entities?

Co-stars Harold Ramis and Dan Aykroyd wrote "Ghostbusters" in 1984; they played Dr. Egon Spengler and Dr. Ray Stantz, respectively. Comedian Bill Murray portrayed the playboy Dr. Peter Venkman; he tried to date their client Dana Barrett, played by Sigourney Weaver.

As Doc Brown suggested, Marty has to "think fourth dimensionally" to defeat Biff in which adventure film?

In "Back to the Future," Doc Brown always tells teenager Marty to "think fourth dimensionally." Since they were playing with time, Marty had to learn to project the future scene of a past scenario. For example, the incomplete bridge in 1955 will already be whole in 1985 when he drives through it.

John McClane manhandled Hans Gruber while talking with Sgt. Al in which '80s action film?

"Die Hard" marked Bruce Willis' introduction to Action Hero Films 101 as he portrayed a different kind of movie hero in this film. As a departure from the old Hollywood concept of the dapper swashbuckling hero, Willis' John McClane got hurt and dirty while fighting the bad guys.

Both Jack Sparrow and Will Turner had a mini-crush on Elizabeth Swann in which live action Disney adventure film?

We know that the famous Disneyland theme park ride is the source of the "Pirates of the Caribbean" film characters. But since the ride opened in 1967, it had to go with the times and got updated. Disney officials changed one scene there where the pirates were auctioning a woman.

Rick Blaine banned Sam from playing a song Ilsa Lund liked in which war-set romance?

"Casablanca" contains one of the most misquoted film lines which goes "Play it again, Sam." What Ingrid Bergman's character Ilsa said was "Play it once, Sam. For old time's sake." Ilsa additionally said "Play it, Sam; play 'As Time Goes by'" to further persuade the piano player.

Joy, Anger and Sadness all felt for Riley in which animated film?

Kyle MacLachlan and Diane Lane provided the voices of Riley's parents in Pixar's 2015 hit animated film "Inside Out." Amy Poehler voiced Joy while Minda Kaling voiced Disgust. "The Office" actress Phyllis Smith voiced Sadness while "Saturday Night Live" alumnus Bill Hader voiced Fear.

Lurch babysat stoic Wednesday and happy Pugsley in which unique family film?

You can see one of Christina Ricci's most memorable character portrayals in the 1991 comedy "The Addams Family." She portrayed Gomez and Morticia's deadpan daughter Wednesday. She reprised this role in the 1993 sequel called "Addams Family Values."

Indy encountered Hitler in the flesh while rescuing his father Prof. Henry in which film?

It was in "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" where Indy came face to face with the Fuehrer himself. He was holding his father's diary, a journal that the Nazis were after. Hitler thought Indy was asking for his autograph, so the former signed the diary.

Nurse Ratched took care of Randle McMurphy and Chief in which medical-themed drama?

"One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" originated as a 1962 novel penned by American novelist Ken Kesey. Kirk Douglas played Randle McMurphy in the Broadway stage version the following years. He reportedly wanted to play the same role in a film version; Jack Nicholson got the part later on.

Rick Deckard encounters Rachael and Pris in which Ridley Scott classic?

"Blade Runner" is hailed by many film critics as a great sci-fi film. However, this film has many versions that featured changes in the following: narration or voice-overs, endings, different shot presentations of scenes, running time, and altered or edited sequences.

If it's not Ashley Wilkes she's pining for, Scarlett O'Hara turned her sights on Rhett Butler, too. Which Civil War drama is this?

Novelist Margaret Mitchell's "Gone with the Wind" epic contained more than a thousand pages. No wonder the film version also spanned almost four hours in its total running time count. There was a 2008 stage musical version that ran for 3.5 hours as well.

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