The Battle of Assaroe is a short documentary film by nature photographer and film maker Emer O'Shea.The movie tells the story of swans along the Erne Estuary as the river Erne enters the sea in Ballyshannon, County Donegal. The life cycle of these birds is captured in moving and still images and culminates in a real live territorial fight between 2 male swans as they compete for the best nesting sites for their partners and imminent brood of cygnets. This backdrop draws the film maker into reflecting upon the history of the man made lake where the battle takes place – the battle between the swans emerges as a metaphor for previous territorial conflict between the supporters of the hydro electric dam which was constructed after World War 2 as Ireland struggled to create an infrastructure for independent energy at a time of great poverty and deprivation and those who forecast the demise of the town by the Dam through the destruction of the natural beauty of the river, the waterfalls and the spectacular 12 arch bridge when the sound of water was silenced and salmon fishing was forever altered. The film includes drone footage of the town and the dam and archive footage of the creation of the dam will be presented. The film will explore the future importance of the power station and question the feasibility of altering and improving the current infrastructure and its impact on both sides of the border.
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