Dune: Part Two and the Death of Freedom (JOSEPH HOLMES, MARCH 6, 2024, Religion & Liberty)

[I]t’s the subversive themes of Dune: Part Two that stick with you after the credits roll. Because while the film ends with a victorious Paul Atreides, the film’s protagonist, who avenges House Atreides against House Harkonnen, he is far from a heroic liberator, as he morphs into a despot himself, waging a holy war against the rest of the empire that will lead to tyranny and genocide just as his dreams predict. Fans of the original Dune novels know that this was always Frank Herbert’s intent, to warn against how easy it is to embrace the worship of a messianic political figure who becomes a worse tyrant than what you had before.