Psychedelia has a Physical Form at Hara Submarine Base
Have you ever thought about exactly where this “land of submarines” mentioned in one of the Beatles’ biggest hits actually was?
“In the town where I was born
Lived a man who sailed to sea
And he told us of his life
In the land of submarines…”
The famous lines are apt to get caught in your head at any old time.
But have you ever thought about exactly where this “land of submarines” mentioned in one of the Beatles’ biggest hits actually was? Could there have been, at least in theory, be a real life equivalent to it?
If so, the abandoned submarine base near Hara, Estonia, is a solid contender.
One of many remnants of Soviet occupation in the country, the pier-like cement structure sits in a corner of Lahemaa National Park, about an hour’s drive east of Tallinn on the Juminda Peninsula.
Built by the Soviet military in the 1950’s, the then-secret base was originally used for demagnetizing submarines but was abandoned by the Soviets in 1991 as Estonia regained its independence. Now it’s under the care of Hara Sadam and the Estonian Heritage Society.
Renee Blodgett’s describes her experience of the Hara base in The Huffington Post:
“…the only thing they left behind was a barren concrete structure, which has since been defaced by graffiti and strained from years of Baltic wind, rain and snow. Rich but worn-out textures atop a cement facade above and below the water’s edge meets weathered and rusted structures, ladders, chains and latches. Among the debris are weakened rocks and wooden slats, which have fallen below an area that once appeared to be a walkway separating sections of the base…”
The place itself is somewhat dreamlike, with colorful graffiti and industrial textures juxtaposed against simple wilderness. While it certainly evokes a feeling of isolation, it could easily be used as a metaphor for nature’s ultimate power, or as a symbol of a dismantled political regime. The unusual setting would no doubt add a surreal vibe if written into a dream or drug trip scene.
The Hara Submarine Base is eccentric and unusual enough to have been captured by photographers everywhere. So, imagine what a great script and director can squeeze out of this somewhat spooky spot…come take a look to find out what we mean.
If you’re spooked though, don’t worry: The Estonian Government has your back. Film Estonia production incentive supports the production of feature films, feature documentaries, animation films, animation series, high-end TV-drama and the post-production of all aforementioned works.
An application can be made for international production service or co-production to receive a cash rebate up to 30% on eligible production costs.
Especially if you’re looking for a great movie location.
Photos: Hannes Paldrok/Location Unit