The Harrad Experiment (1973) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Harrad Experiment (1973)

The Harrad Experiment (1973)

The Harrad Experiment





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Harrad Experiment Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

In The Harrad Experiment, young men and women attend Harrad College for what is essentially a one-year "control group" trial in pre-marital sex, to be overseen by Prof. Philip Tenhausen (James Whitmore) and his wife, Margaret (Tippi Hedren). Although initially paired off for the first month, they will be free to change partners once a month if they so desire. The film focuses on two couples, the somewhat shy Sheila (Laurie Walters), who is paired with the rich and swaggering Stanley (Don Johnson), and alluring Beth (Victoria Thompson), whose roomie is the awkward Harry (Bruno Kirby). The two couples don't get off to a good start, as Stanley is disappointed in his partner and Harry intimidated by his. There's a great deal of tension as the partners consider whether they have been paired off appropriately, and the jealousy and discomfort they feel comes to the surface in an improvisational exercise overseen by Philip. Whether this is all a result of mismatched pairs or more a result of Stanley's inability to "feel" is the subject of some debate, and leads to a number of confrontations and scenes (not to mention nude yoga classes and discussions of group marriage). Stanley also attempts to interest Margaret in having sex with him, but when she suggests that they do so freely and openly on the lawn, he can't go through with it. Stanley decides he wants to leave Harrad, but at the last minute changes his mind and joins Sheila, Beth and Harry for a group hug. Based upon Robert Rimmer's best-seller, Harrad was followed by a sequel, The Harrad Summer.more
Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Romance
Directed By:
Written By: Ted Cassedy, Michael Werner
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 1, 1998


James Whitmore
as Philip Tenhausen
Tippi Hedren
as Margaret Tenhausen
Don Johnson
as Stanley Cole
Michael Mislove
as The Ace Trucking Com...
Melanie Griffith
as Extra (uncredited)
Michael Greene
as Yoga Instructor
Gregory Harrison
as Student (uncredited)
Eric Server
as Workman
Fred Willard
as The Ace Trucking Com...
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for The Harrad Experiment

Critic Reviews for The Harrad Experiment

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

July 7, 2005
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Based on lame book about sexual experimentation, the movie fares about as well.

February 21, 2008

August 8, 2005

Full Review… | May 24, 2003

Audience Reviews for The Harrad Experiment


Interesting premise and surprisingly profound at times. Featuring a young Don Johnson and Bruno Kirby in full glory.

Jeff B

I've just recently gotten into watching older movies. They are so great. A peek into the earlier days, lol. Anyway, The Harrad Experiment is a very good movie. I totally recommend it to anyone with interests in older movies. Nice storyline.

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