How to Watch Movies on Kodi

Set up Kodi to play videos from your digital DVD collection

Four people watching a movie on a projection screen in a backyard

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Kodi is an open-source media player that runs on almost every platform. It doesn't come with any media when you download it, but acts as a hub through which you play movies and TV shows you already own. And since it's open-source, users have created hundreds of extensions that add to Kodi's functionality. Here's how to set up and watch movies on Kodi.

Kodi is compatible with Windows Vista and later, Linux, macOS 10.8 and newer, Android 5.0 and higher, and Apple devices running iOS 6 and up

How to Set up Kodi

Kodi starts after a quick download to your chosen platform. Here's how to get started with it.

These instructions use Safari on a Mac, but the process will be similar on every platform.

  1. Kodi's homepage
  2. Select Download.

    Kodi's homepage with the download button highlighted
  3. Scroll down to the Choose Your Weapon header and select platform you want to use Kodi on.

    Kodi's download page, including the platform options

    You can only use Kodi with jailbroken iOS devices.

  4. A new window will open. Select How To for more detailed instructions and information on compatibility.

    Kodi for MacOS window with the How To button highlighted
  5. Select Installer to download Kodi.

    Kodi for macOS window with the Installer button highlighted
  6. Once the file downloads, follow the instructions for your chosen platform to install Kodi.

How to Add Movies to Kodi

Kodi plays content that's already on your computer, device, or hard drive. Here's how to start using it.

You can add movies you've downloaded via iTunes to your Kodi library, but you won't be able to watch them because of digital rights management. Several third-party programs are available that may help Kodi play these files.

  1. Open Kodi.

  2. Select Enter files section on the main menu.

    Main menu of Kodi with the Enter Files Section button highlighted
  3. Select Add videos.

    Kodi with the Add Videos button highlighted

    You can also select Movies to select videos from folders that Kodi chooses automatically, but they may not be the ones you want to add.

  4. Select Browse.

    Add video source in Kodi with Browse button highlighted
  5. Navigate to the folder containing the videos you want to add. The path will generate at the bottom of the window. Select OK when you've reached the folder.

    Kodi file browser with the path and OK button highlighted

    Kodi won't show the files inside the folders.

  6. Enter a name for the media source if you want and select OK.

    Kodi's video source window with the OK button highlighted
  7. The next window provides some options for the files you're adding to your library. Select This Directory Contains to sort the content into a particular section of Kodi (e.g., Movies, TV Shows, or Music Videos). You can also select Choose Information Provider to have Kodi download film information based on the title.

  8. Select OK when you've chosen your settings.

    Kodi's Set Content window with the OK button highlighted
  9. In the next window, select Yes to confirm your settings. Kodi will take a moment to update your file listings.

    Change Content confirmation window in Kodi with the Yes button highlighted
  10. Repeat these steps to add as many sources as you want.

How to Watch Movies in Kodi

Once you've given Kodi paths to the videos you want to see, you can watch them from the main menu.

  1. Select Movies from the main menu.

    Main menu of Kodi with the Movies heading highlighted
  2. Select the video source you set up in the previous section.

    Videos section of Kodi with a source highlighted
  3. Select the title of the video you want, and it will play.

    Kodi with a video title highlighted
  4. The upper-right corner of the playback window shows both the current time and when the video will end if you play it nonstop. In the lower-left corner, you can start the movie over, play/pause it, or stop it completely and return to the previous menu.

    You can also press the left arrow key to rewind, the right arrow key to fast-forward, or select the playback bar to jump to an exact point in the video.

    A video playing in Kodi with the playback controls and the time highlighted

    To rewind and fast-forward using the arrow keys, you must have your mouse pointer on the playback bar.

  5. Press the Esc key to return to the previous menu.

If the video is still playing when you press Esc, it will continue to play behind the menu.

How to Play a DVD in Kodi

Kodi isn't just for digital media. You can also use it to play physical discs, which includes both commercial releases and DVD-Rs that you've burned. Here's how to do it.

  1. With Kodi open, insert a disc into your computer's drive.

  2. Select Disc.

    The main menu of Kodi with the Disc heading highlighted
  3. Select Play disc.

    Kodi's Disc menu with the Play Disc button highlighted
  4. The controls while watching a DVD are the same as for other videos, but they also include a new icon. Select the Home icon to return to the main menu of the disc.

    A DVD playing in Kodi with the home button highlighted
  5. To eject the DVD, return to the Disc menu and select Eject / Load.

    Kodi Disc menu with the Eject/Load button highlighted

How to Find More Movies to Watch on Kodi

By default, Kodi only works with files that you point it to. But because it's open-source, the community has developed add-ons to increase its functionality. Here's how to find and download Kodi extensions to watch even more content on Kodi.

Some add-ons may provide access to illegally obtained movies and TV shows. Use your best judgment when considering installing them.

  1. In Kodi, select Add-ons.

    Main menu in Kodi with the Add-ons menu highlighted
  2. Select Enter add-on browser.

    Kodi's add-on menu with the Enter add-on browser button highlighted
  3. Browse the list of add-ons until you find one you want, then select it.

  4. Select Install.

    An add-on page in Kodi with the Install button highlighted
  5. If the add-on you selected needs more files to work, the next screen will show you everything Kodi will need to download. Select OK to continue.

    Kodi add-on download screen with the OK button highlighted
  6. Kodi will download all of the necessary files.

  7. Press Esc to return to the Add-ons menu, where the extension you installed is now visible.

    The add-ons menu in Kodi with the Crackle extension installed
  8. Select the add-on to open it and browse its content. Movies and shows you watch from add-ons have the same controls as videos you imported.

  9. Repeat these steps to add more services to your Kodi browser.