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The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler (2009)

The story of Irena Sendler, a social worker who was part of the Polish underground during World War II and was arrested by the Nazis for saving the lives of nearly 2,500 Jewish children by smuggling them out of the Warsaw ghetto.

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, (as Lawrence John Spagnola) | 1 more credit »
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4,600 ( 68)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Janina Krzyzanowska
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Stefan Zgrzembski
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Dr. Majkowski
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Monsignor Godlewski
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Ewa Rozenfeld
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Hanna Rozenfeld
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Jakub Rozenfeld
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Jadwiga
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Dr. Janusz Korczak
Rebecca Windheim ...
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Zofia
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Rabbi Rozenfeld
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Michal Laski
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Storyline

The story of Irena Sendler, a social worker who was part of the Polish underground during World War II and was arrested by the Nazis for saving the lives of nearly 2,500 Jewish children by smuggling them out of the Warsaw ghetto.

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Genres:

Biography | Drama | War

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Release Date:

19 April 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler (#58.3)  »

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's opening prologue states: "World War II rages through Europe. In occupied Poland, the Germans have established the Warsaw Ghetto for all the Jewish residents of the city. Over 440,000 Jews are forced inside its walls . . . There are some Poles who want to help . . . " See more »

Quotes

Irena Sendler [owa]: I remember what Father used to say. You see a man drowning, you must try to save him even if you cannot swim.
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Connections

Featured in The 61st Primetime Emmy Awards (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

Great Story In a Middling Production
16 May 2017 | by See all my reviews

This is a TV movie (CBS) on the true life of Irena Sendler, who served as a nurse in Warsaw during World War II. She could see what was happening all around her and decided to do something about it. So she started getting Jewish children out and into Polish homes. This led her to being involved in the Polish underground. It was originally called 'The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler' and did not have a misrepresentative 'war' action cover either, as it does in the UK release – which is shameful in its money grubbing attempt to mislead the public.

The film is told in linear style and traces her efforts right the way through the life of the ghetto. It is reasonably well made with some good period detail but it is also nakedly sentimental almost from the start. That is forgivable bearing in mind the subject matter.

It does balance things up as it develops and we get some nasty Nazi's but this is not an action packed war movie it is a character driven story. It is really about the people who cared and risked their lives to save others. The acting is all adequate but some of the children really ought to think of an alternative career option (yes I know they are young – but so was Shirley Temple) and everyone speaks in English as this was made for US TV. It was filmed in Riga too so some very nice settings and in the end it is a brilliant way to remember another brave and kind woman who put others before herself.


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