SXSW Review: The Truth vs Alex Jones

Why are people so thirsty for lies that can be debunked in a second?

This movie is a startling and fascinating documentary directed, produced and filmed by Dan Reed. It provides a case study about what is happening in today’s social-media infected world, where atrocious lies can be told and spread causing terribly unimaginable harm to the victims of those lies. 

Reed’s work, coupled with superb post production editing by Pete haddon and William Grayburn, unravels in an immensely gripping way, a story culminating in a defamation case with the largest verdict in US history.

Disgraced radio talk-show host Alex Jones on his show ironically named Info Wars, spent over 10 years spreading sensational falsehoods focused on the Officials, Government, teaching body and parents of the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Connecticut that happened on snowy December 15th in 2012. It is established that 25% of Americans believed these egregious lies, which equals some 75 million people. Unbelievably, thousands of those believers sent hate mail, threats of rape and even showed up at parent’s homes to ask to see those children to demand proof the shooting never happened.

The film asks an incredibly poignant question in today’s world where public opinion is literally directed and fueled by the whims of propaganda wrought-out by those we watch on social media, YouTube, TikTok , etc. That question is asked by one of the attorneys representing the parents at trial: Why are people so thirsty for lies that can be debunked in a second?

As a Jew in today’s world, I am sickened by the sheer amount of propaganda and lies about Israel’s right to defend itself, since it was brutally attacked on October 7 by monstrous terrorists. For each post I make trying to elucidate the truth for people about Israel, there are another 20 people behind me saying the exact opposite and falsely calling Israel a genocidal nation. I know this is not true, and I feel similar to the parents of the Sandy Hook children watching the amount of hate speech, death threats and blood libels leveled at Israel and my jewish friend around the world, which is exacerbating antisemitism everywhere. Neil Heslin and the other parents that were victorious against a morally bankrupt Alex Jones are at least fortunate because they have a single man to sue. I wish that us Jews had a way to recover remunerations from Hamas and its supporter Iran for their disgusting actions continuing well over 75 years against the Jewish nation.

The Truth vs Alex Jones sends a powerful warning to the public about the unfettered spread of propaganda as we discover with pain, the terrible truths of what happened on that tragic day in 2012 straight from chief FBI investigators. Each time the officer read a deceased child’s name felt like knife cuts on my skin. 

We are treated with actual trial footage, which exposes Alex Jones as a big-mouth liar who lost against the parents of Sandy Hook in court by failing to comply with court proceedings, and now owes said parents a total of just under a trillion dollars… none of which he has paid back (as of March 2024). All this while the man is still broadcasting on his Info Wars channel to this day.

I don’t often urge people to watch a documentary, but due to its urgent and powerful message, The Truth vs Alex Jones is available for streaming on HBO Max and is highly recommended, even essential viewing. 

Congrats to Dan Reed for his phenomenal and important work. May the memory of the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre be forever a blessing, and may evil and the perpetuators of evil be silenced in the presence of light and truth. 

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