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There is a scene in Avengers: Age of Ultron where Scarlet Witch stops a moving train with her powers.

I didn't quite understand how she was able to do that. While she has some kind of telekinetic powers, it still seems impossible to stop an object if you are inside of it (by pushing/pulling it in opposite direction). So how was she able to stop that train?

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I don't think we need realism tag for superpowers, how can superhero's power real or realistic to start with? – Ankit Sharma Jan 11 at 13:34
Um, can you add a little more detail in order to explain what movie you're actually asking about and what scene in that movie and what about the scene is unclear to you? – Napoleon Wilson Jan 11 at 13:34
@Ankit Sharma it is not about powers, it's about physics. – R S Jan 11 at 13:37


Scarlet Witch has abilities that are, obviously, well beyond what actual people can do. While they have never actually used the word "magic" in the movie universe, in the comics, her power is explicitly magical. As such, it's unfair to expect it to have any basis in physical reality.

In the movie, she was given telekinetic and telepathic powers by the Mind Stone embedded inside Loki's scepter. This allows her to, among other things, exert a force against objects mentally, without having to be in contact with them. In this specific case, she was able to exert a force against the train that was detached from the train -- it wasn't her body that was pulling against the train's wheels, it was entirely mental, so it didn't matter that she was inside the train at the time.

If you look carefully, a lot what she is doing is just applying the brakes: she stops the wheels from turning in the same way that a braking system does. However, we can also see her "pulling" on the train as she does so, to bring it to rest further. The braking part, of course, is just friction, but the other part is all down to her powers.

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Agreed, it was "entirely mental" ;) – BMWurm Jan 11 at 13:49
She also lifts the train up, so her magic is between the wheels and floor, locking it up more. – cde Jan 11 at 14:53
While they have never actually used the word "magic" in the movie universe, this is (hopefully) about to change. ;) – Mason Wheeler Jan 11 at 15:52
@MikeEdenfield To be fair, it's entirely plausible for a scientist to try to couch the observed phenomena in scientific terms. To some, the word “magic” is tantamount to throwing up your hands and saying it cannot be understood. That goes against everything science stands for. And after all, to quote Agatha Heterodyne, “Any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science.” If Scarlet Witch’s powers are observable facts of the universe, scientific theory regarding the universe must move to account for them. Then again, “Not using the ‘Z word’” is a rather overplayed trope recently – KRyan Jan 11 at 18:15
@MikeEdenfield Well, I haven’t seen the footage in question (and don’t wish to until I see the movie properly), but if the scientist in question was speculative—“well, maybe it could be...”—rather than sure, that strikes me more as someone determined not to accept just “magic” as a convenient solution, but rather seeking to fit it into the greater framework of science. That would be appropriate, methinks. – KRyan Jan 11 at 18:38

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