How to watch the X-Men movies in chronological order

The X-Men franchise is a beloved collection of 13 films that began in 2000 with fan favorites like Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier and Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. However, the films take a bit of a Star Wars approach and start later in many characters’ stories before returning to their origins.

That means there are lots of different ways to watch these movies, and how you watch them will determine how certain reveals and moments pay out. While it might be easy to just watch them as they’re released, we’ve organized the 13 films by how they roughly fit into a large timeline. This will allow you to experience the X-Men story from the beginning and follow each character’s journey from the beginning.

With the X-Men set to step into the Marvel Cinematic Universe after a matchstick of Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, we thought the best way to prepare for the future was to honor the past. If you’d like to watch them in release order, we’ve also included that below.

Without further ado, here’s our mostly spoiler-free rundown of how you can watch the X-Men movies in chronological order!

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The X-Men movies in order (chronological)

X-Men movies in chronological order

1. X-Men: First Class (2011)

where to watch: Disney+

X-Men: First Class is the start of a new X-Men chapter that rewinds the clock to the oldest point in the film franchise’s timeline. The film begins in 1944 at the Auschwitz concentration camp before moving to 1962. The story follows a young Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto and the origins of the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants.

Read our X-Men: First Class review.

2. X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

where to watch: Disney+, Effects

X-Men: Days of Future Past is a little tricky to place on the timeline because it features the X-Men from the original movies and more recent ones. Much of the story takes place in 1973, but a lot of time is also spent on an alternate version of 2023. Some story elements that we won’t spoil here allow us to place it here on the timeline, but having an affection for the original team certainly helps make this a more special cinematic experience. This means that it can also match the end of this list if desired.

Read our X-Men: Days of Future Past review.

3. Origins of the X-Men: Wolverine (2009)

where to watch: Disney+

The first X-Men spin-off film begins in 1845, but the bulk of the story is set in 1979 and explores the… well, origin of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. Not only do we see how he got his iconic adamantium claws, but we also get our first introduction to Ryan Reynolds‘ Wade Wilson/Deadpool.

Read our X-Men Origins: Wolverine review.

4. X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)

where to watch: Disney+, Effects

X-Men: Apocalypse stars Oscar Isaac as En Sabah Nur/Apocalypse and pits him against our reboot X-Men team. While the film begins in 3600 BC, much of the story takes place in 1983.

Read our X-Men: Apocalypse review.

5. X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019)

where to watch: Disney+

X-Men: Dark Phoenix is ​​the latest film featuring the X-Men team led by James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, and it tells the story of Sophie Turner’s Jean Gray transformation into the Phoenix. The film begins in 1975 but is mostly set in 1992.

Read our X-Men: Dark Phoenix review.

6. X-Men (2000)

where to watch: Disney+

Due to the way these movies play out, the jump from Dark Phoenix to X-Men doesn’t come as easily as a movie like Rogue One jumps to A New Hope, but the first live action movie X- Men then fits into the timeline as it takes place in the early 2000s. While James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender played their younger versions in the earlier films, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen take on the roles of the older versions. of Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto in these films.

Read our X-Men review.

7. X2: X-Men United (2003)

where to watch: Disney+

Set shortly after the original, X2: X-Men United picks up the story as a brainwashed Nightcrawler attempts to assassinate the President of the United States. Big events occur at the end of the film that set up The Last Stand and tease the arrival of this Phoenix trilogy iteration.

Read our X2: X-Men United review.

8. X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

where to watch: Disney+

X-Men: The Last Stand was the first live-action film to tell the story of Phoenix, but in terms of the series’ internal timeline, it’s the second. Either way, we see Famke Janssen’s Jean Gray resurrected as the dangerously powerful Phoenix and take on our favorite X-Men in this final film in the original trilogy.

Read our X-Men: The Last Stand review.

9. The Wolverine (2013)

where to watch: HBO Max

The Wolverine is sort of a sequel to both X-Men Origins: Wolverine and X-Men: The Last Stand and is set shortly after the latter film and deals with the fallout from the events it depicts. It also introduces Yukio, a later version of whom will appear in Deadpool 2.

Read our Wolverine review.

10. Deadpool (2016)

where to watch: Watch for Free with Ads on Amazon Freevee, Effects

While making his first appearance in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Ryan Reynolds Wade Wilson/Deadpool made his solo film debut in 2016’s Deadpool. This film is mostly separate from the events of the main films, but Deadpool is in the same universe, which would give you a complete picture of the franchise. There is no specific time Deadpool takes place, but it seems to take place around the time of its release – 2016. As one of Ryan Reynolds best movies, you can watch this one off service if you need it.

Read our Deadpool review.

11. Deadpool 2 (2018)

where to watch: Watch for Free with Ads on Amazon Freevee, Effects

Much like the original, Deadpool 2 doesn’t have an exact date it takes place, and its events mostly take place outside of anything else in the X-Men franchise. That being said, this sequel features younger, returning X-Men and a messed up moment/reference for Logan, so it’s possibly set in the late 2020s. That being said, it’s Deadpool and all jokes are fair game for this mercenary who breaks the fourth wall with a mouth.

Read our Deadpool 2 review.

12. The New Mutants (2020)

where to watch: HBO Max

The New Mutants appears to be set in the late 2020s as it features a connection to Logan, which takes place in the year 2029. Much like Deadpool, The New Mutants primarily tells its own contained story and can be viewed safely there or somewhere around this.

Read our The New Mutants review.

13. Logan (2017)

where to watch: Watch for Free with Ads on Amazon Freevee, Effects

As previously mentioned, Logan is set in the year 2029 and follows Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine and Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier to a world where mutants are all but extinct. It’s clearly the movie that takes place the farthest in the timeline and should therefore be the one that ends them all. And it’s a great ending.

Read our Logan reviews.

X-Men movies in release order

  • X-Men (2000)
  • X2 (2003)
  • X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)
  • X-Men: First Class (2011)
  • The Wolverine (2013)
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)
  • Dead Pool (2016)
  • X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)
  • Logan (2017)
  • Deadpool 2 (2018)
  • Dark Phoenix (2019)
  • The New Mutants (2020)

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