By William Wolf

TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2016--ALL GOVERNMENTS LIE: TRUTH, DECEPTION, AND THE SPIRIT OF I.F. STONE  Send This Review to a Friend

The perception that all governments lie, a truism that guided the late renowned journalist I.F. Stone, is fleshed out in this absorbing documentary by Fred Peabody. A major illustration among the various examples is how the Bush administration misled us and plunged the country into war with Iraq.

For years I. F. Stone issued his I.F. Stone Weekly. I was a subscriber and looked forward to his revelations about what was going on in the world. Stone was an outsider, and found more information digging into documents than attending press conferences.

Although it is a tribute to him by pursuing culprits in this film, when I saw his name in the title, I expected the film to be more about Stone and his work than there is. I would have appreciated more of a focus on him and his life. While the film has some valuable information and builds on his legacy, it could have used much more about Stone himself.

Still, the film accomplishes a great deal by digging into our political history and illustrating how government can dissemble. In contrast, we see some of the contemporary, principled journalists who fight to bring the public truth. Peabody has made a film that is extremely important to journalism and the need to fight to preserve those standards. It also stands solidly in the memory of I.F. Stone. Posted November 17, 2016.

  

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