A museum of natural history is filled with the most incredible things. Prehistoric creatures, ancient warriors, forgotten tribes, exotic animals and legendary historical heroes - all lifelessly confined. Or are they? In Night at the Museum Larry Daley gets a job as a night watchman in one such museum. Larry has previously had trouble keeping down jobs, but this time he is going to make his son Nick proud, for how hard can a job as night watchman be?
Everything goes according to plan until visitors leave for the evening. Suddenly the whole museum's exhibition is alive. A wax model of President Theodore Roosevelt explains that all the exhibits will disintegrate to dust when the sun rises if they are not returned to their right place. Larry has to therefore get everyone in place before dawn, but it is not easy when a playful T-Rex skeleton, tiny armies of Romans and cowboys, and a cheeky monkey tease him to bursting point.