THE OIL ROCKS - Behind this enigmatic name lies the first and largest offshore oil town ever built. A vast, sprawling web of oil platforms in the middle of the Caspian Sea, commissioned by Stalin in 1949. Imagine: 2,000 oil rigs, 300 kilometres of bridges, rusty old Soviet trucks rolling back and forth, nine-storey building blocks, thousands of oil workers, a cultural palace, a lemonade factory, a green park... Sixty years on, the Oil Rocks still stand. But two-thirds of the infrastructure has been regained by the sea. A kind of Oil Atlantis, only real. Combining black-and-white archives from the Soviet era and contemporary footage, the film tells the story of this timeless place and of some of its amazing inhabitants. It is the first time a Western film crew is allowed to make a documentary on the site since its creation.
Director: Marc Wolfensberger (www.thin-line.net)
Camera: Jon Björgvinsson Sound: Blaise Gabioud Editing: Patrick Léger, Peter Entell, Ana Acosta
Producer: Isabelle Gattiker Production companies: Swiss TV TSR, Intermezzo Films, Thin Line Productions Co-producers: YLE (Finland), MDR (Germany)
Length & format: 52 min, DigiBeta / HD
International sales: www.intermezzofilms.com, www.thin-line.net