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60 Cool Hand Luke Trivia Questions & Answers

Cool Hand Luke
This category is for trivia questions and answers related to Cool Hand Luke, as asked by users of

There are 60 questions on this topic. Last updated Dec 10 2023.
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1 When the inmates asked Luke why he cut the heads off of parking meters, what was his response?
Answer: "Small town, not much to do in the evening."

In the opening scene of the movie, we found out how Luke wound up on the chain gang. Luke was seen, drunk, taking the heads off of parking meters. The street was lined with decapitated parking meters.
Question Reference: Quiz: Cool Hand Luke.
trivia question Quick Question
Who was the character that normally fetched water for the gang?

2 Finish the quote: "What we've got here is failure to communicate. Some men you just can't_________."
Answer: reach

"Some men you just can't reach. So you get what we had here last week. Which is the way he wants it, well he gets it, and I don't like it anymore than you men." Strother Martin, as "the Captain", delivered this speech when Luke was brought back to the gang after his first escape attempt.
3 After Luke's 2nd escape, he has to work extra hard and spend every night in the box. This is done to make his mind right so he doesn't attempt escape again. As the gang returns to camp one evening Luke is pulled out of line. Boss Paul (Luke Askew) shows Luke an area and says that it is Boss Keane's ditch, and Luke's dirt is in it. Luke digs out an area the size of a grave. Boss Paul returns and wonders why Luke's dirt is now on his yard. Luke fills the area back in. After it is filled with dirt again, Boss Paul again returns and wonders why Luke's dirt is still in Boss Keane's ditch. What does Luke do next?
Answer: Luke digs it out again.

After Luke dug it out this time, Boss Paul comes back and wonders why the dirt is still in his yard. Luke gets sassy and Boss Paul hits Luke, knocking him into the grave sized ditch. At this time Luke begs not to be hit anymore. Luke claims his mind is right. He promises not to backslide or backsass anymore because his mind is right. Boss Paul tells him if he escapes again they will kill him. Luke promises him he won't run again. The captain then orders Luke to get cleaned up and get some rest.
4 Carr, the Floor Walker, is an inmate trustee in charge of the barracks. He explained to the new men about the rule violations that would be punishable by spending a night in the box. What was NOT a rule explained in Carr's recitation?
Answer: Escape

Carr was played by Clifton James. His recitation to the new men is one of the film's most memorable scenes. Although escape would put a man in the box, Carr's rules dealt with the living quarters.
5 Luke was a good prisoner until he was placed in the box because his mother died. He then decided to escape. How did he escape the first time?
Answer: He sawed a hole in the barracks floor and went over the fence.

This escape took place during a 4th of July celebration, right before final count. Another con went with him and got caught on the fence and went to the box. With 50 inmates, Carr, the Floor Walker, gave the count as, "48, 1 in the box and 1 in the bush, Boss." Why a smart guy like Luke didn't go until after the count was taken always surprised me.
6 What was the movie "Cool Hand Luke" created from?
Answer: A novel

The novel was written by Don (sometimes written Donn) Pearce in 1965. Mr. Pearce actually served time on a chain gang for safecracking. He also appeared in the movie in the uncredited role of "Sailor".
7 What was the name that Dragline gave to the young lady who was washing her car in front of the chain gang?
Answer: Lucille

Dragline called the young lady washing the car Lucille. When the other inmates asked him how he knew that her name was Lucille, Dragline said that, "anything so innocent and built like that just gotta be named Lucille."
Question Reference: Quiz: Cool Hand Luke.
8 What song did Luke sing when he heard of his mother's death?
Answer: Plastic Jesus

With tears rolling down his cheeks, Luke sat on the edge of his bunk with his banjo, and sang "I don't care if it rains or freezes, long as I got my plastic Jesus." It was never mentioned exactly how Arletta, Luke's mother, died. When Arletta came to visit Luke she was obviously very ill. It can be assumed that smoking may have been the cause since she had a very scratchy voice and often had coughing fits.
9 With his mind now right, Luke is returned to the barracks. What was the reaction of the other cons?
Answer: They turned their backs on him.

Luke had always been defiant but the beatings and hard work were too much. Luke had to withstand a lot of abuse and now it appeared that the authorities broke his spirit. The other cons now acted as Luke was a traitor for giving in. They separated themselves from him.
10 Gibson, a new man who arrived at camp with Luke, gets put in the box. Why did this happen?
Answer: He was the subject of a practical joke played by other inmates about a job assignment.

Gibson was played by Ralph Waite. Another inmate duped him into switching jobs. The bosses thought he was a complainer and put him in the box. Dragline said he didn't go to the box cause of the joke, but that he went because "He backsassed a freeman...he gotta learn the rules."
11 With Luke "in the bush", a patrol car pulls into camp and the trunk is opened. The captain gets a big grin on his face. What was in the trunk?
Answer: A dead hounddog.

The captain may have been expecting Luke but instead got the dead bloodhound, Old Blue. Old Blue led the hunt for Luke. Dogboy carried him up to the captain crying, "...he run himself plum to death." Dogboy was the con in charge of the dogs and was played by Anthony Zerbe.
12 What was Cool Hand Luke's full name?
Answer: Lucas Jackson

The captain, played by Strother Martin, addresses him by this name when he first arrives at the road camp.
13 Who played the Captain?
Answer: Strother Martin

It was the Captain who first spoke the classic line, "what we got here is...failure to communicate." Strother Martin was a busy actor in the 1960's, also appearing in "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance", "The Wild Bunch", "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "True Grit".
Question Reference: Quiz: Cool Hand Luke.
14 Who was NOT a character from the movie?
Answer: Bagman

Surprisingly no one had the name Bagman. The character Dynamite, played by Buck Kartalian, was hardly ever seen, but his name was mentioned several times. Loudmouth Steve, who was also called Stevie, was played by Robert Drivas. Tramp, played by Harry Dean Stanton, was one of the new inmates, called "new-meat", that came in with Luke.
15 With his mind right, Luke did whatever the bosses told him. He had to fetch water for the other inmates and fetch Boss Godfrey's rifle. He was overly polite to the bosses. Luke then surpisingly made his third escape. How did he go this time?
Answer: He stole a road gang dump truck.

Dragline jumped on the running board of the truck and went with him. Boss Godfrey fired his rifle but Luke raised the dumper to block the bullets. Luke had earned the trust of the bosses so much that he stole the keys to all the other vehicles so they could not pursue him.
16 What accessories were given to the men going to the box?
Answer: A nightgown, a #10 can and a white porcelain pot with a lid.

The box was a small wooden structure which was high enough for a man to stand up but not long enough for a man to lie down. A man had to strip and put on the nightgown. A boss then slid in the #10 can and the white pot for personal reasons. A padlock was then placed on the door.
17 Luke was captured and brought right to where the gang was working. A set of leg chains were applied on him. The captain said it for his own good. Lukes said something and the captain stuck him with a club, knocking him down a hill. What did Luke say to the captain?
Answer: "I wish you'd stop being so good to me, Captain."

This is the scene where the captain says his famous line, "What we've got here is failure to communicate." The capatin addressed the men after he knocked Luke down the hill saying he tried to make Luke comply but couldn't reach him.
18 What was the crime Cool Hand Luke was convicted of?
Answer: Destroying Municipal Property

The movie opens with a drunken Luke cutting the heads off parking meters. Asked why he did it by the other cons, Luke replied, "I had an old score to settle." He never said what the old score was.
19 What was the last thing that Luke did to throw the bloodhounds off of his trail?
Answer: sprinkled chili powder and other spices on the ground

Luke was wearing chains in his second escape attempt. He took off cross-country, jumped fences, ran onto a railroad bridge, and through a stream, attempting to lose the bloodhounds. When he came to an old country store, he asked two young boys to get him an axe to cut his chains, and spices to throw the dogs off of his trail. When the bloodhounds reached the spices, they began to sneeze, and sneeze, and sneeze.
Question Reference: Quiz: Cool Hand Luke.
20 Why did Luke say he wanted to eat fifty eggs?
Answer: it'd be something to do

Dragline asks "Luke that's money you're talking about, now what's a matter with you?". Luke says "Yeah well, it'd be something to do." Luke finds a way for every cent in camp to be put in a gambling ring, without betting any of his own money. Luke manages to swallow the last egg at the last second. As a result, Luke becomes like the gang's "bank" allowing others to take out loans since he, Dragline, and KoKo now have all the camp's money. It is never stated who bet for or against Luke, but when the inmates are asking for money, Luke, Dragline, and KoKo are the ones at the table handling the money.
21 Luke and Dragline hid the truck and Luke suggested they split up. Dragline now had second thoughts about why he went with Luke, as he only had a couple more years left on this sentence. Dragline said he would go to his father's farm. Where did Luke go?
Answer: Into a nearby church.

Inside the church Luke had a talk with God. Luke had a problem understanding why God had never given him any breaks in life.
22 Prison officals allowed inmates to fight each other on Saturday afternoons, if they had a problem which needed to be solved. Luke and Dragline had a big fight. What was the reason for this fight?
Answer: Luke made comments about a girl washing her car.

The girl put on a sexy show for the inmates while she was washing her car as the men were working alongside of the road. Dragline named her Lucille and fantasized about her that evening. Luke made the comment that she knew she was driving the men crazy and Dragline didn't like that, so Dragline then challenged Luke to a fight. The girl was played by Joy Harmon. Although Luke was beaten senseless, he actully won the fight as Dragline wouldn't hit him anymore and went inside with the rest of the cons.
23 How did Luke get caught after his first escape?
Answer: He was in a stolen car.

Luke explained to the other cons that he stole a car. A cop pulled right up next to him, with him still wearing his state clothes. He said, "That was top flight police work, fella's probabaly a lieutenant by now."
24 How much time did Luke have to serve?
Answer: 2 years

The author, Don Pearce, also received a two year sentence, which helped him write the novel. He also wrote the screenplay. The captain said that two years wasn't much.
25 What did the inmates call the prison guard who wore the polaroid sunglasses and carried a rifle?
Answer: the man with no eyes

The character's actual name was Blind Dick. He wore his sunglasses throughout the movie; we never saw his eyes. Nor do we hear him speak; his rifle did his talking for him. Blind Dick was played by Richard Davalos.
Question Reference: Quiz: Cool Hand Luke.