WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 01: Dinesh D'Souza attends the DC premiere of his film, "Death of a Nation," at E Street Cinema on August 1, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Shannon Finney/Getty Images)
Shannon Finney/Getty Images


Dinesh D’Souza’s ‘Police State’ Brings Dystopian America Into Focus


Dinesh D’Souza and Michael Moore have something in common: Both evoked Adolf Hitler in their recent films.

Moore did it, over and again, in his 2018 documentary “Fahrenheit 11/9,” a cartoonish assault on President Donald Trump.

D’Souza opens “Police State,” his latest docudrama, with images of der Fuhrer along with Joseph Stalin and Chairman Mao.


Yet, while Moore strained to make any coherent connection to his target, D’Souza’s “Police State” quickly settles into a more credible series of allegations. And he has the headlines to back them up.

The combination of a two-tiered justice system, government-led censorship and an effort to muzzle “Ma and Pa” conservatives have America steering toward a “fledgling police state.”

D’Souza, a savvy marketer, knew adding the word “fledgling” would strip his film of its marketing pop. It’s the phrase he uses repeatedly in his new docudrama, a collision of staged reenactments and harrowing talking head interviews.

IMDB. D’Souza Media.

The film starts fast, notwithstanding the roll call of 20th century monsters. D’Souza knows few, if any, liberals will watch his new film, but he still could have warmed up to the topics at hand.

He finds a bipartisan entry point by noting how President George W. Bush’s War on Terror tactics embraced after 9/11 eventually turned away from global actors to the home front. And we didn’t see it coming.

Some of “Police State” will feel familiar to conservatives who aggressively read news outlets outside the warped mainstream. Republicans are keenly aware of social media giants blocking inconvenient opinions, no matter how accurate they turn out to be.

Or how Hunter Biden remains free and clear (for now) while former President Donald Trump faces a crush of serious indictments.

Perhaps that’s why the filmmaker recruited actor Nick Searcy to play the literal face of FBI corruption. The “Justified” alum anchors the dramatic recreations, playing an FBI boss overseeing the smackdown on Joe and Jane Sixpack.

Churchgoers. January 6th protesters. Moms who aren’t keen on their children reading dirty books at school.

Ironically, Searcy’s 2022 film “Capitol Punishment” offers a companion piece to “Police State.” That film showed actual footage of FBI agents barging into suspects’ homes, guns drawn as if they were taking in a terrorist cell, not a beleaguered Trump fanatic.

“Police State” features commentary from Rep. Jim Jordan, Sen. Rand Paul and pundit Dan Bongino, the latter offering a dash of the theatrical. Some of D’Souza’s questions fall into the “leading” category, but the answers leave a mark.

And yet the film hardly needs extra razzle or dazzle. The facts laid out are horrifying enough.


  • The January 6th protestor who hung himself before an over-the-top charge against him could be thrown out of court, according to his grieving aunt.
  • A concerned mother whose attempts to speak her mind about her children’s school curriculum led to FBI agents breaking into her home.
  • A senior citizen, Joseph Bolanos, gets the cancellation treatment when the local media reports on his microscopic ties to the Jan. 6 protests. That was easy compared to how the FBI treated the pillar of his community.

Whistleblowers power much of the narrative. 

Rogue FBI agents Kyle Seraphin and Steve Friend describe the incentives employed to round up real and imagined domestic terrorists. Former Big Tech workers share how some of the most influential platforms in our culture censor opinions considered unwelcome. Twitter Files, anyone?

Health and Human Services (HHS) whistleblower Tara Lee Rodas describes the atrocities tied to President Joe Biden’s open border policies, including children being sex trafficked at will.

“Police State” understands that facts and figures only take a project like this so far. It’s why we meet folks like pro-life activist Mark Houck who nearly spent a very long time in jail for pushing an abortion clinic worker after the man verbally harassed his son.

Houck volunteered to turn himself in to the authorities. The authorities opted to raid his home instead, snatching him away from his wife and seven horrified children as if he were a drug cartel kingpin.

Previous D’Souza films delivered the facts and agitprop, even for those who lean to the Right. The pundit and author’s film canon delivers furious broadsides against the Left.

Last year’s “2000 Mules,” which alleged an intricate pattern of voter fraud helped sway the 2020 presidential election, found a subdued D’Souza raising alarming questions about voting integrity.

“Police State” offers a blend of the D’Souza old and newer style. There’s a level of showmanship that’s unmistakable, combined with testimony from people who have suffered at the government’s hands.

D’Souza’s visual style – shaky camera work combined with sly graphics – underlines the themes in play. That, plus the bleak color canvas, gives the story a dystopian appeal. The recreations have a sharper feel than past D’Souza efforts, his filmmaking chops growing over time.

The docudrama wraps on an optimistic note, an odd tonal choice given what preceded it.

It’s a shame D’Souza’s conservative brand will keep most progressive viewers far away from “Police State.” Even if he toned down his partisan framing they wouldn’t give his film a fair shake. 

Americans from both parties need to see what’s happening to America, and why even a fledgling police state won’t stop with just one party.

Christian Toto is an award-winning journalist, movie critic and editor of HollywoodInToto.com. He previously served as associate editor with Breitbart News’ Big Hollywood. Follow him at @HollywoodInToto.

The views expressed in this piece are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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