As a special service for Ubuntu users, the mplayer project now provides packages for various versions of Ubuntu. The packages are built twice a week from SVN trunk and run independently of your system libraries. Read the announce

Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid and higher now can install mplayer and x264 video encoder and keep updated easily by following method:

Open up a terminal window under Applications -> Acessories -> Terminal, and then type in following:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:motumedia/mplayer-daily
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install mplayer

Enjoy!