I just watched X-Men Apocalypse, and it was night time when Apocalypse was awoken. Then, this ultra mutant being who has been asleep for 10,000 years didn't even reign a full day before the final events.

I don't recall another night scene in the movie, but maybe it's eluding me. Does it seem strange that a mutant with this much backstory, raw power, and buildup loses out in 24 hours?

  • Should we assume that just because there was not another night scene (if indeed there was not), the movie took place over a single day?
    – Adamant
    Jun 14, 2016 at 21:26
  • 4
    I'm pretty sure Magneto's part by itself takes up more than a single day but I'd have to re-watch to be sure.
    – KutuluMike
    Jun 14, 2016 at 21:36
  • Moira is present when Apoc is awoken in Egypt, then later she's back in her office (assumedly Langley?). Charles and Hank take an unknown amount of time to visit Moira in her office, then take an unknown amount of time to return to Xavier's Mansion. The kids later get captured and transported to Old mate's hideout in the dam, and kept there for what seems to be about one night. The group later travels to Egypt for the final showdown (on the quinjet but still takes travel time).
    – Möoz
    Jun 14, 2016 at 22:44
  • 4
    “it was night time when Apocalypse was awoken” — er... wasn’t he awoken when the sun shone onto the gold bits in his pyramid, after Moira wandered down there and left the entrance uncovered? Jun 15, 2016 at 8:57
  • It certainly felt like so.
    – burcu
    Jun 17, 2016 at 13:03

3 Answers 3


I partially disagree with KutuluMike on the timing of certain events, so I will describe my own analysis as follows.


Due to timezone differences, we will discuss this in phases: The timing in relation to each other is approximated because I am making sense of the events at the same time I am typing this - further analysis after this section will pinpoint the timings more accurately. Note that all mentions of timing (day, night etc.) is in local time.

  • Phase 1:
    • Egypt, day: Apocalypse awakens, triggering a global shockwave.
    • Germany, day: The shockwave triggered an accident at the steel mill. Erik saves a man's life with his powers in reflex.
    • USA, night: The shockwave triggered nightmares in Jean. After calming her down, Charles used Cerebra to track the source of the shockwave, and witnesses Moira escape the tomb in realtime.
  • Phase 2:
    • Egypt, after the awakening: Apocalypse starts exploring the city trying to make sense of what happened, eventually commencing his recruitment of new Horsemen.
    • USA, morning: Charles sets off for the CIA office to speak to Moira who returned from Egypt. After they left, Jean, Cyclops etc. snuck off to the mall.
    • Germany, after work: Erik goes home, prepares to flee, and things go horribly wrong. He decides to seek vengeance on his workmates when Apocalypse arrives to recruit him.
    • Germany, one teleport later: Apocalypse upgrades Magneto, then they proceed to make further preparations.
    • USA, later that day: By now, news of Magneto's reappearance has spread worldwide. Charles returns home with Moira to be greeted by Mystique. They then proceeded to contact Magneto, got hijacked by Apocalypse, the world got nuclear disarmed, and the entire joint blew up after the Prof got abducted. After Magneto Jr. saved almost everyone, Cyclops & Co. arrived. Mystique etc. got abducted, and Jean & Nightcrawler gets everyone on board.
  • Phase 3:
    • An unknown time later: Charles and the captured mutants wake up. Charles conveyed the message, Jean's company got discovered, Weapon X was unleashed, Mystique's group is released, and everyone got to the advanced jet.
    • Meanwhile in Egypt: After conveying the message, the pyramid was built, Magneto started destroying the world, and Apocalypse moved Charles into the pyramid to prepare for the transference, but not before the X-Men arrived.
    • The rest of the movie happens rapidly.

Dividing events in phases allow us to ignore timezones and group events happening at the same time or in rapid succession. Now, we can observe the following points:

  • There is a roughly 0-1 hour timezone difference between Egypt and Germany. Therefore, Apocalypse must have recruited Erik the day after he awakened.
  • There is a roughly 5-6 hour timezone difference between NYC & Egypt. Since it's night when Charles spied on Moira, it should be morning in Egypt.
  • In 2016, it takes about 12h to fly from Egypt to NYC. A flight departing at 9+ Egypt time will arrive at 3+ NYC time. In 1983, when RotJ premiered, it should take longer.
  • Moira can only have arrived in USA in the afternoon earliest, and it would only be evening in Germany. Erik has only just ended work.
  • As such, it is likely that Charles only visited Moira the next day, giving time for events to happen to Erik, for news to spread worldwide and reach Mystique, then for her to meet Charles, contact Magneto, get Charles abducted, the house blown up, THEN for Stryker to arrive in the day.
  • From Charles departure from the mansion, assumed to be morning, to his arrival at CIA HQ, to his return and all the shit that happened, to the kids' return from the mall, we can expect it to be the afternoon when the kids returned. That means it would be evening in Egypt.
  • It is daytime when Charles awakened, so we can expect it to be the next morning.
  • Everything happened rapidly from there. For Charles to be saved before the transference is complete, he must be rescued in the same day.

So there we have it. On the first morning in Egypt, Apocalypse awakens. On the first night, Erik tries to run away but fails. On the second day, he got recruited. During the second night in Egypt, shit goes down in America. On the third morning, Charles awakens before Apocalypse. By the end of the day, the X-Men defeats Apocalypse.

The events of X-Men: Apocalypse, therefore, probably occurred over the span of three days in Egyptian time.

  • Brilliant, meticulously composed answer.
    – 299792458
    Feb 2, 2019 at 15:54

Based solely on the progression of Magneto's storyline, I think we can safely assume it takes more than one day. There's also a few places where I suspect we're supposed to mentally insert "the next day..." into a scene. As a gut feeling I would say 3 days, though there are not very many clues.

Magneto's story definitely takes place over the course of at least two days. On day 1, he is at work when there is an accident, and he's forced to use his powers to save a coworker. He returns home at the end of his shift, puts his daughter to bed, and starts preparing to run. After he's confronted by the lynch mob, he returns to his place of work the next day to kill everyone, where he joins Apocalypse and the others.

Magneto's accident was caused by Apocalypse, probably within hours of his waking up, so we know Apocalypse also woke up on day #1 and came to meet Magneto on day #2.

Also on day #1, when Apocalypse woke up, Moira was in Egypt during the afternoon, when she discovered his tomb. She then goes back to Washington DC to her office where she meets with Xavier. Given the flight time and time difference, and the fact that Moira appears to be rested/cleaned-up/etc, this must be the next day, the same day Magneto and Apocalypse meet.

On that same day #2, the 3 students sneak off to spend the day at the mall, and they are still gone when Xavier gets back to the mansion. Apocalypse abducts Charles and blows up the rest of the mansion in the process, and Stryker shows up just as the kinds are coming back from the mall. So, all of this must have been happening on the same day, day 2.

From there things moved pretty fast, as there's not much of a break in the action. The adult X-Men are captured and held by Stryker, the younger ones rescue them, and they immediately head for Egypt and Xavier for the final confrontation. however, that Egypt is 7 hours ahead of DC, so the fact that it was midday in Egypt when they arrived means it's likely another night has passed, and it was now early morning of Day 3 in New York when the climactic battle happened.

  • Obviously good reasoning as usual, however, it could be said though, that Magneto's story might have begun before Apoc's awakening. If the OP only cares about Apoc's reign, then we need to use his awakening as a starting point.
    – Möoz
    Jun 14, 2016 at 22:45
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    @Mooz Remember that Apocalypse's awakening shook the entire planet. The accident that Erik stopped was a result of this global quake. So we can at least confirm these two events to be near each other chronologically. Charles went to meet Moira before the kids snuck out to watch Star Wars, and they returned and got the mansion blown up before the kids returned. Jun 15, 2016 at 8:58
  • you're right, I was injecting a whole extra night into there before the kids left the mansion, I've updated it. I suspect my answer is now pretty similar to yours.
    – KutuluMike
    Jun 15, 2016 at 11:37

Very good points for each of you. I commend your thought into this. As the original post points out a 100,000 year old being wakes up after 10,000 years and is snuffed out overnight. If one were to take the ratio of days slept vs days awake, then it is safe to assume it was "overnight" Clearly it was "overnight" The hours and seconds are irrelevant at this point.

What was quite interesting is that no one knew of his existence outside of the cult. He comes to life and is snuffed out in 1, 2, 3, 10 days? Anything less than a few years would be "overnight".

Either way it ruined the story. If one wakes from any period of slumber they will be waking up. Groggy, out of it. Need some time to adjust. How the heck could he get all that information from a pre-internet television broadcast when he was mere seconds from waking up. (Ratio of time slept vs time awake compared to an average human day)

Remember there weren't as many networks as there are now and even then, it was all cable TV in the USA. Russia was still on lockdown as was most of Europe. The only station was the people's station. He would somehow learn all the languages of the world with a handful of random broadcasts that HAPPEN to be showing Ronald Reagan giving an oval office address, mid-day.

I remember 'Ol gipper and he knew when the time was right to give a speech from the Oval office. Never during the day.

Dont get me started on the age discrepancies between Professor Xavier, Magneto, Jean Gray, and Douche-eyes. The setting was 1983, that would mean Jean was 17. That would make her 33-34 in the X-Men (2000) movie and Is-He-Quicksilver speedster was roughly 30 in the events of this movie. Maybe... not buying it. (I did love his scenes though. I'll buy that for the pure entertainment value)

So yes, when accounting for all of this fluff pseudo science, it is safe to assume it all happened in 1 day or less. There is no science to say any of this was possible in 3 days much less 1 so 1 day it is. End of story.

Now back to your regularly scheduled programmes.

  • Pretty much nothing after the first paragraph has anything to do with this question. This is not a forum for random thoughts about movies.
    – phantom42
    Jun 17, 2016 at 13:48

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