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The Harrad Experiment Details


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. ~ Craig Butler, Rovi


James Whitmore
as Philip Tenhausen
Elliott Street
as Wilson
Gregory Harrison
as Student (uncredited)
Robert Middleton
as Bower
Don Johnson
as Stanley
Fred Willard
as The Ace Trucking Company
Sharon Taggart
as Barbara
Michael Greene
as Yoga Instructor
Ron Kolman
as Evan
Tippi Hedren
as Margaret Tenhausen
Michael Mislove
as The Ace Trucking Company
Billy Sands
as Jack
Melody Patterson
as Jeannie
Bruno Kirby
as Harry Schacht
Laurie Walters
as Sheila
Melanie Griffith
as Extra (uncredited)
Eric Server
as Workman


Ted Post
Ted Post
Noel Marshall
Ted Cassedy
Artie Butler
Composer (Music Score)
Norman Gimbel
Bill Brame
Jesse Corallo
First Assistant Director