Truth To Power


Garin Hovannisian
Michael T. Vollmann
Story Supervisor
Barry Poltermann
Production Partners
Live Nation Productions

Cinema for Peace
Award for Justice 2021


In 2001, the band System Of A Down partnered with music producer Rick Rubin to record their sophomore album. Against all odds, and during one of the most painful and precarious months in American history, the album Toxicity skyrocketed up the Billboard chart and catapulted to Number One. But just as System Of A Down achieved their commercial triumph, in a post-9/11 world their politically-charged lyrics were suddenly the subject of scrutiny; they were thrust into headlines, and their songs were pulled off the radio. The band’s global fanbase saw in frontman Serj Tankian a spokesperson for their disillusionment. Tankian had always been outspoken and political, both on stage and off, but when he found his message inspiring a popular movement on the other side of the world, he began to realize that his music was more revolutionary than even he could imagine.

The film follows Tankian down an unexpected path as his passion for human rights and activism led him to become a social justice organizer in Armenia. Fueled by interviews with the band, their producers, and fellow rock icons, Truth To Power is both an energizing rockumentary and an inspiring call to action for our turbulent times.

The film is well-paced, tightly edited and engaging, and at times, it’s quite inspiring.

Kory Grow
Rolling Stone

This explosive, much-needed call to action against corrupt politics and global inaction couldn’t be more timely.

Randy Myers
San Jose Mercury News

Director Garin Hovannisian constructs Truth to Power into a complex rockumentary, a necessity given Tankian is a multifaceted individual.

Ray Lobo
Film Threat

In insightful glimpse into the artistic process, as well as the intersection of politics and entertainment, while chronicling Tankian’s evolution in both arenas.

Todd Jorgenson