Updates on Canadian availability of "American Horror Stories", "Anne Boleyn", and more.
Mortal Kombat, the 2021 martial arts combat film based on the video game series of the same name, and a reboot of the film series previously released from 1995 to 1997, was released in North American theatres on Friday, April 23, 2021, by Warner Bros. Pictures.
Because of the ongoing closures of cinemas in most parts of Canada during the coronavirus pandemic, the Warner Bros. Canada website has confirmed that Mortal Kombat is available both in movie theatres, where permitted to open, and as a premium video-on-demand (PVOD) rental, initially going for about $24.99 (plus tax) for a 48-hour rental, beginning at approximately 3:01 a.m. EDT / 12:01 a.m. PDT on April 23.
Note that unlike the U.S. day-and-date release on HBO Max, the film will not be available through a subscription streaming service in Canada like Crave until several months after the release.
Mortal Kombat is now available to rent in Canada through the following retailers, with no subscription required to be able to rent:
- Amazon Prime Video Store
- Apple TV / iTunes Store
- Cineplex Store
- Google Play Movies & TV
- Microsoft Movies & TV
- YouTube Movies
In addition, if you subscribe to a cable or similar TV service provider, Mortal Kombat should be available to rent for a similar price through most video-on-demand services (on your set-top box), via providers including Bell, Rogers, Cogeco, SaskTel, Shaw, Telus, and Vidéotron.
PVOD, also known by names like "premium rental" or "Home Premiere", is a relatively new model for the home entertainment industry that allows consumers to watch new-release movies from home at the same time as, or very shortly after, they're released in theatres. Because it's only possible to charge per household, not per viewer (i.e., per seat as with a regular theatre), these rental prices are set quite high to start, comparable to two adult movie tickets. However, in most cases, they've come down to "regular" VOD prices within a few months.
I'm seeing ads promoting this movie on HBO Max. Can't I watch it there, or on Crave in Canada?
In the U.S., Mortal Kombat is part of Warner Bros.' "Same Day Premieres" distribution model for late 2020 and 2021 releases which began with Wonder Woman 1984, in which WB theatrical films will have a day-and-date release on co-owned streaming service HBO Max, and will be available for streaming for no extra charge to subscribers on that service for 31 days after release.
However, this streaming release does not apply in Canada, or in most of the rest of the world for that matter, where HBO Max is not available.
International services that are otherwise closely related to HBO Max, including Crave in Canada, and even other HBO-branded services in Latin America and Europe, have not been given any similar early access to these films either, as discussed at length in other recent posts, like our post about Wonder Woman 1984. (Some other HBO Max original movies, like Zack Snyder's Justice League and An American Pickle, are available on Crave, in large part because Warner Bros. chose not to release these movies in theatres at all, at least in North America.)
That said, as a Warner Bros. release, Mortal Kombat will be covered by a "pay-1" output deal that sends the studio's first-run films to Crave (with Movies + HBO, i.e. the version of Crave that costs about $20 per month), several months after their theatrical runs. These films are typically made available to Crave about 8-10 months after theatrical release, but given that this schedule moved up for WW84 (which will be on Crave in late May, about five months after release), there's a strong possibility of a similar release for Mortal Kombat, which could be as soon as September 2021 (but don't be surprised if it's a few months later).