X-Men: Apocalypse

Movie review by
S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
X-Men: Apocalypse Movie Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Superhero-size violence, fab effects in '80s-set threequel.
  • PG-13
  • 2016
  • 144 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 17 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 54 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Lots of conflict and disagreement, but in the end it boils down to: United you stand, but divided you crumble. Friendship, teamwork, support, unity, and hope can save the day. Also: Don't fear what's different, and embrace who you are.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although there are some clearly evil characters, Professor X believes in the good in people and feels that extra talents can be controlled so they won't wreak havoc. Mystique is loyal to her friends, even when they seem not to be her friends anymore. Some strong, powerful female characters and a somewhat diverse cast.


Lots of superhero-style action, including weapons, big explosions, and plenty of hand-to-hand action. Bodies fly, and so do other large objects. In one sequence, a group of men's heads is destroyed in nearly an instant. In an extended sequence featuring Wolverine, he fights anonymous bad buys by slashing them, resulting in some bloody, disturbing moments; but for the most part, it's not gory. Very menacing bad guy bent on destruction. Very sad death of a child, with resulting grief.


Flirting. A couple of female characters are fairly scantily clad; Mystique is technically nude when she's in her natural state, but it looks like body armor.


In addition to one use of "f--k," language includes "piss," "damn," "hell," "ass," "oh my God," and "goddamn."


Tie-in to vast quantities of X-Men/Marvel merchandise.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that X-Men: Apocalypse (the third film in the X-Men: First Class reboot series), pits the super-powered heroes against a mighty foe who's bent on nothing less than laying waste to the whole world. Expect plenty of superhero-style action violence; aside from one sequence with some disturbing slashing, it's not particularly gory, but it does involve lots of combat, destruction, and weapons. There's also some swearing (mostly "piss," "damn," etc., but there's one use of "f--k"), a couple of scantily clad characters, and a few intense scenes centering around one character's loss of his family. Most of the popular X-Men from the prior movies are back, and there are a few new ones, too; overall, they're a pretty diverse bunch, with several strong women. And in the end, the story showcases the value of teamwork.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byfahimforid December 18, 2020
Adult Written byAllAges August 13, 2020
Teen, 15 years old Written by_MovieMan_ May 29, 2016


This movie is another X-Men sequel, so expect Violence. I go to every movie that comes out and love action packed movies..... This one wasn't my favorite.... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byMr. Review Guy February 14, 2021

Massive destruction, cool effects in worthy, but overlong “threequel”

X-Men: Apocalypse is a pretty good X-Men movie. It’s not nearly as good as The Wolverine or X-Men: Days of Future Past, but with cool effects and a good story,... Continue reading

What's the story?

At the start of X-MEN: APOCALYPSE, it's the 1980s, and the mutants have scattered around the globe. Professor X (James McAvoy) now runs a school for kids gifted with superpowers, Magneto (Michael Fassbender) is living a quiet life as Erik Lehnsherr, a factory worker with a wife and young daughter, and Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) is keeping to herself. But then a 6000-year-old super-mutant, Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac), is awakened from his deep slumber, ready to wreak havoc everywhere aided by his crew of evil mutants (Alexandra Shipp, Ben Hardy, and Olivia Munn). With stakes so high, it's hard for the team not to reunite, especially since Magneto is deeply troubled and has been lured to the dark side because of a deep loss. Will the X-Men prevail?


Is it any good?

This adventure has the requisite gang's-all-here clash and bang of a Marvel superhero movie that's sure to enthrall franchise fans, but there's more to it: It has depth. Instead of just jumping from one mishap to the next, X-Men: Apocalypse takes some care unveiling its storyline, which touches on fairly intense themes.

Although we once again find Magneto teetering on the line between good and evil, the cast's game-on performances elevate the film from mere special-effects showcase. (And to be clear, those effects are astounding, right from the get-go with an impressive opening sequence.) At times, Apocalypse feels a bit overcrowded, as is the case with most ensemble action films, but for the most part, most of the franchise's big characters -- even Wolverine -- gets his or her moment in the sun. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the action violence in X-Men: Apocalypse. Scenes of battle and mayhem are a big part of superhero movies: Do you think they're always necessary to the story? What's the impact of media violence on kids?

  • How do the characters demonstrate teamwork? Why is that an important character strength?

  • What is the movie saying about being suspicious -- or accepting -- of others who may not be quite like you? How does this theme play out in the X-Men franchise?

  • The X-Men don't always agree about how to proceed with a mission -- or even if they all have the same intentions. Talk to your kids about the role that disagreement plays within a group of peers. 

Movie details

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