Deborah Lipstadt (Rachel Weisz) is an American Holocaust-based American teacher whose speech is interrupted by David Irving (Timothy Spall), a specialist in the history of Nazi Germany. He sued Lipstadt in the UK, but also the publishing house that published the book to her and where she labeled him as a Holocaust denial. Because the legal system in the UK is made in such a way that the accused must prove innocence in libel cases, Lipstadt and his team of lawyers, led by Anthony Julius (Andrew Scott) and Richard Rampton (Tom Wilkinson), must show that Irving lied about the Holocaust.
To prepare for the defense, Lipstadt and Rampton take the death camps of Auschwitz, Poland, along with a local scholar, while the research team is studying Irving’s personal journals. Lipstadt is annoyed by the seeming disrespect of Rampton’s questions about the subject and frustrated when the team minimizes his efforts in this case, arguing that it affects his chances of success.
Members of the Jewish community in the UK ask the woman to come to terms with Irving outside court rooms to avoid making her publicity free of charge. Even so, the women’s team has a first victory when, by resorting to Irving’s ego, he persuades him to accept a trial with a judge rather than a jury that he could have manipulated much more easily to his advantage . Irving runs his own legal representation against Lipstadt’s legal team.