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Doctor Who: The Sontaran Experiment (Story 77)
Doctor Who The Sontaran Experiment
Story 77
Actors: Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, Ian Marter
Director: Rodney Bennett
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Cult Movies
NR     2007     0hr 50min

The Doctor (Tom Baker), Sarah Jane, and Harry return from the space station Nerva to Earth 10,000 years in the future. The desolate landscape that once was the site of Piccadilly Circus has become the testing ground for th...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, Ian Marter
Director: Rodney Bennett
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Cult Movies
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Drama, Science Fiction, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Studio: BBC Video / Warner Bros.
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 03/06/2007
Original Release Date: 09/29/1975
Theatrical Release Date: 09/29/1975
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 0hr 50min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 14
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

I Will Destroy You All....Later
Shaun Anderson | Nottingham/Hereford, England, UK | 01/20/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

""The Sontaran Experiment" is a breezy delight, which whips along at breakneck speed and contains some of the most delightfully absurd dialogue the series had seen, I think only "Pyramids of Mars" betters it. Field Marshall Styre wins the dialogue plaudits with his inspired "I will destroy you all later....But first I have more important tasks to perform". How can you not love a villain who refers to the Doctor as a "worm". Dialogue aside the 2 episode format really fits this story, which doesn't suffer from Doctor Who's perennial problem of over padding and repetition. Perhaps most important about this story though is the wonderfully cruel sadistic streak that runs through it. Some of Styre's experiments truly are abominable and I shan't spoil them here for those who haven't seen this story. This dark, horrific side of Doctor Who developed strongly under the production of Phillip Hinchcliffe and showed that Doctor Who was willing to push the boundaries of its time slot. However it must be remembered that "The Sontaran Experiment" does form part of a short story arc exploring the future of the human race that began with "Ark in Space", an awareness of this story will enhance the enjoyment of "The Sontaran Experiment"
The DVD itself may sound like a bit of a rip off, the main feature after all does only run for 50 minutes. But we are compensated by a very good 40 minute documentary entitled "Built for War" and a commentary track, which overall makes it a worthwhile purchase. This is not the deepest and thematically exciting Doctor Who story, but it very entertaining and good fun."
"I just love clocks: atomic clocks, quartz clocks, grandfath
Crazy Fox | Chicago, IL USA | 03/17/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I can't help but get the impression that with "The Sontaran Experiment" the writers and producers are experimenting with the viewers just a bit. By that I don't mean the unusually short length of the storyline (two episodes instead of the standard four or the epic six) or the exclusively outdoors setting (which works well except for making the poor robot stick out like a sore thumb). Their experiment is this, I think: can we make the other factors of the show so very good that viewers will overlook the implausibility of the plot?

The answer in my case is in the affirmative, I'm afraid. I was enthralled by the brisk, tightly-scripted adventure with all of its tension. I was laughing uncontrollably at the Doctor's classic quirkiness masterfully rendered by Tom Baker--"Never throw anything away, Harry" he tells one of his traveling companions as he tosses an object aside. I was impressed with the acting by the cast, who are able to convey a range of extreme emotions without going over the top. I was appalled by the military experiments being performed by the eponymous Sontaran, Field-Major Styre--these are truly chilling, all the more so for being convincingly authentic, as anyone familiar with Nazi war crimes or the terrible stuff the Japanese Imperial Army's Unit 731 did in Northeast China can attest. Styre himself makes for a great villain, his dismissive arrogance almost as enjoyable as the Doctor's quirkiness; by the end of basically a half hour, you love to hate him so much that watching him get his just desserts is thoroughly satisfying. In short, the show's whole crew really had me going the whole time. It was only after the story was over that cool reflection set in and it struck me: why are the Sontarans trying to "invade" an abandoned planet?! The whole premise of the plot is bogus, but I was taken in by the hocus-pocus, so hats off to the folks responsible for this little gem."
2nd Appearance of the Dreaded Sontarans
JBowman | 5th Dimension | 04/24/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This episode marks the first meeting between the 4th Doctor, and the dreaded Sontarans, as well as the 2nd screen appearance of the Sontarans. Rather a good episode that fills the gap between The Ark in Space, and Genesis of the Daleks."
Sontarans look like Russett Mr. Potatoheads!
Patrick W. Crabtree | Lucasville, OH USA | 01/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This one is a really great episode, one of my personal favorites. Tom Baker plays Doctor Who and Sarah is his sidekick along with one other male sidekick.

Doctor Who stops off on Earth (far in the Earth's future when it is no longer inhabited) to make repairs to some equipment that he has based there. Sarah and her friend come along for some R&R in the beautuful English countryside but they run into a "hole-trap" right away! Pretty soon some human astronaults show up and they are very suspicious of the TARDIS trio because some of their crew members have been killed.

The facts ultimately show that it is Styre, the Sontaran, along with his devilish mobile robot, who has been torturing and killing off the astronaults. He had lured them to Earth with a fake distress call and then destroyed their space ship after they had landed. Styre is conducting "experiments" on humans to detect all their mental and physical inferiorities, (e.g., by water deprivation, by mashing them, etc.), so that his tribe can invade the galaxy and exploit these weaknesses. His superiors are awaiting his final report prior to the invasion.

But Doctor Who has other plans for the Sontarans!

The Sontaran, Styre, looks like a giant russett potato with arms and legs and dressed in a cool space suit, and is actually made up quite good. His robot is also a timeless work of tinsmithing art. The cinematography in this entry is spectacular and the action is constant.

If I have a singular critique of this one it's that it is one of the shorter Doctor Who episodes, having only two parts. Still, it's very worthwhile television. My highest recommendation."