The Desperate Hours Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

Joseph Hayes
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 119 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. For whom does Fredricks work?

2. What do Dan and Cindy do?

3. How old is Cindy?

4. What town is the setting for the play?

5. Where has Helen Laski been spotted?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happens to Griffin when he leaves the Hilliard house?

2. What does Eleanor ask Dan?

3. What does Dan tell Ralphie and what does Ralphie and Griffin do after Eleanor and Chuck have left the house?

4. During the first scene at the Hilliard house, how does Eleanor feel when her family are all gone off to their daily places, and what does she do?

5. What gives the sheriff's office a clue about the convicts?

6. What does Ralphie do when he comes home?

7. What does Dan do when he arrives back at his house?

8. What does Carson tell Bard about his behavior?

9. What does Griffin say that makes Hank angry?

10. Why is Griffin upset about Robish and Hank?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Mr. Patterson, the garbage man, comes by to collect money for the monthly bill and realizes something is suspicious. Robish jumps on the back of his truck and ends up murdering Mr. Patterson. Answer the following questions in a well-developed essay using examples from the book as well as personal experience:

1. Is there anything Mr. Patterson could have done to be safe? Would you have thought to check the back of your truck under the same circumstance?

2. Do you think that the only thing Robish could have done is kill Mr. Patterson? What about tying him up and letting someone else know later? What does it say about Robish as a person that he so easily kills a man?

3. Do you think Glen Griffin would have taken the same action as Robish against Mr. Patterson? What about Hank?

Essay Topic 2

When Cindy first arrives home after the three convicts have taken control of the home, she realizes the situation and almost runs, but Griffin stops her with the threat that he will kill Eleanor if Cindy tries to leave. Answer the following questions in a well-developed essay using examples from the book as well as personal experience:

1. Would you run or stay if you were Cindy? Consider that it is possible the convicts would kill you along with your mother no matter what they say. Explain your rationale.

2. If you were Eleanor, would you want your daughter to run, even if it means your death? Explain.

3. Later in the story, the young boy of the household, Ralphie, does try to leave, though he is caught by Robish. Why do you think Ralphie tries to run; whereas, Cindy decides to enter the house and voluntarily become a hostage?

Essay Topic 3

In the very opening of Act 1, one immediate theme of the play is obvious--that of convicts and the penal system of the United States. Choose one of the following questions and write a well-developed essay using examples from the book as well as personal experience:

1. Compare and contrast the penal system of the United States during the late-1940s and early-1950s to that of the early-21st century.

2. Answer the following questions after conducting some research: How do convicts manage to occasionally escape from what seems to be a very secure place? What type of prisoners tends to escape? How often do you think convicts escape? Do most escapees today refrain from harming hostages as was the case in this situation in Desperate Hours? Do you think the two brothers (Hank and Glenn) who were ultimately killed deserved death? What about Robish? What should happen to him?

3. Discuss the following questions in a cohesive essay: Do you believe today's prison system is cruel? Why or why not? What do you think is the reason for the high recidivism rate of convicts who are released and end up back in prison fairly quickly? Could the prison system do a better job of truly rehabilitating prisoners? What would that take?

(see the answer keys)

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