Photo collage. (Source imagery: Universal Pictures; UChicago ARD Communications)
Sixteen questions
Filmmaker John Hughes meets UChicago in this uncommon quiz of pop culture knowledge.
Every year the UChicago admissions office asks would-be Maroons to tackle uncommon essay prompts. But some of the trains of thought that take high school students to Hyde Park sound a lot like what high schoolers think about in Shermer, Illinois—the fictional North Shore neighborhood that serves as the setting for many of filmmaker John Hughes’s movies. Can you tell which lines are taken from UChicago essay prompts, and which are from a classic Hughes flick? Answer key below.
  1. Who would buy a jar of mustard a foot and a half tall?
     
  2. Could you describe the ruckus?
     
  3. What does Play-Doh have to do with Plato?
     
  4. How come all of a sudden your parents trust you?
     
  5. How did you get caught?
     
  6. I mean, really, what’s the point?
     
  7. What would you be doing if you weren’t out making yourself a better citizen?
     
  8. How do you feel about Wednesdays?
     
  9. Did anyone ever forget your birthday?
     
  10. What’s so odd about odd numbers?
     
  11. Where’s your brain?
     
  12. So where is Waldo, really?
     
  13. How are apples and oranges supposed to be compared?
     
  14. Do you understand the concept of the word “privacy”?
     
  15. Seriously, how cool is the mantis shrimp?
     
  16. We think you’re crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are.
 

The answers.

  1. UChicago prompt
     
  2. The Breakfast Club (1985)
     
  3. UChicago prompt
     
  4. Weird Science (1985)
     
  5. UChicago prompt
     
  6. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
     
  7. The Breakfast Club (1985)
     
  8. UChicago prompt
     
  9. Sixteen Candles (1984)
     
  10. UChicago prompt
     
  11. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
     
  12. UChicago prompt
     
  13. UChicago prompt
     
  14. Some Kind of Wonderful (1987)
     
  15. UChicago prompt
     
  16. The Breakfast Club (1985)