Messiahs in fiction and fantasyThe idea of a messiah figure has long been an element in the genres of science fiction and fantasy. Perhaps the earliest use of a messiah figure in fantasy is the mythical figure of King Arthur.
Warning: Wikipedia contains spoilers.
C. S. Lewis wrote the fantasy series "The Chronicles of Narnia" as a parable for the New Testament, to introduce readers to the Christian idea of a messiah; the lion Aslan dies for other people's sins but is reborn, and is part of a trinity.
The concept of the messiah is central to the Dune series of books by Frank Herbert. The main charater in Dune is Paul Atreides, the messiah of the Fremen people. The seires explores the power of the messiah on the individual as well as the idea of destiny as it pertains to the concept of the messiah.
J. Michael Straczynski had a series of three messiah-figures in his television series Babylon 5; the messiah is referred to as "The One". "The one who was" refers to Captain Jeffrey Sinclair, a man with ties to the the Minbari prophet Valen, "The One who is" refers to Captain John Sheridan, who gave his life and came back from the dead at Z'Ha'Dum to save his people, and "The One who will be" refers to the Minbari ambassador Delenn, who will lead her people into the future.
The Matrix movie trilogy also features a messanistic figure referred to as "The One". "The One" has many prophecies relating to his role in humanity's salvation. Thomas A. Anderson, aka Neo, discovers that the world he lives in is merely a computer simulation intended to keep humanity enslaved. Not only does he penetrate this illusion, but he discovers that he has significant abilities to manipulate the simulation himself and joins with other rebellious humans to bring down the entire system. Mr. Anderson doesn't find true confirmation of his role as the One until he is killed in battle, but manages through his own power over the Matrix to somehow bring himself back to life immediately thereafter. Students of Gnosticism will notice many of its themes touched upon. Other motifs include the free will vs. fate debate and the nature of reality, perception, enlightenment, and existence. In many ways The Matrix is about a kind of reality enforcement.
In the movie Deep Impact, the name of the space shuttle that saves Earth from a comet impact was named the Messiah. At the end of the movie the Messiah's crew sacrifice themselves by using the ship as a kamikaze missile to split the comet's nucleus.