Blessed is the Match

About This Episode


Narrated by Joan Allen, Blessed Is the Match is the first documentary feature about Hannah Senesh, the World War II-era poet and diarist who became a paratrooper, resistance fighter and modern-day Joan of Arc. In 1944, Hannah joined a mission to rescue Jews in her native Hungary, the only military rescue mission for Jews during the Holocaust. Parachuting behind enemy lines, Hannah was captured, tortured and ultimately executed by the Nazis. Incredibly, her mother Catherine witnessed the entire ordeal - first as a prisoner with Hannah and later as her advocate, braving the bombed-out streets of Budapest in a desperate attempt to save her daughter.

With unprecedented access to the Senesh family archive, and through interviews and writings, Blessed is the Match retraces Hannah's perilous mission and imprisonment. The film explores Hannah's childhood against the backdrop of significant historical events resulting in a rich portrait with several interlocking strands. It also looks back on the life of a uniquely talented and complex girl who came of age in a world descending into madness.