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Review: Mondo Duplantis is ‘Born to Fly’ in new sports film

The new sports film “Born to Fly” on Olympic gold medalist pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis was directed by Brennan Robideaux.

Mondo Duplantis wins the gold medal at the 2023 World Athletics Championships
Mondo Duplantis wins the gold medal at the 2023 World Athletics Championships. Photo Credit: Joerg Oegerli
Mondo Duplantis wins the gold medal at the 2023 World Athletics Championships. Photo Credit: Joerg Oegerli

The new sports film “Born to Fly” on Olympic gold medalist pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis was directed by Brennan Robideaux.

“Born to Fly” tells the intimate story of Mondo Duplantis and his rise to fame from a child prodigy to the greatest pole vaulter of all time, who broke the word record multiple times in his career (and to this day, continues to do so on a regular basis).

It features archived footage of when Mondo was 4.5 years old, when he first learned to pole vault, all the way to his Olympic triumph in Tokyo. He was always coached by his father, former pole vaulter Greg Duplantis, and his mother Helena is his trainer.

The movie is expertly shot by Brennan Robideaux, and it includes commentary from his parents, Greg and Helena Duplantis, as well as two-time world pole vault champion Sam Kendricks.

It truly captures the heart and mindset of a champion, and all the trials, tribulations and sacrifices that Mondo’s family did for him to help mold him into the individual and the athlete that he is today.

“Born to Fly” depicts pole vault as a sport that is both lonely and complex but also exhilarating at the same time because it is the closest thing to flying. The moral of the story is to listen to your coaches, put in the hard work, and trust the process.

Mondo Duplantis in IAAF Diamond League in Paris
Mondo Duplantis in IAAF Diamond League in Paris. Photo Credit: Joerg Oegerli, Mitchell Media.

Without giving too much away, there are several moments that will make the viewer cry for joy. It is neat to watch Mondo’s evolution, growth and maturity as a world-class athlete throughout the movie.

Duplantis also revealed that two of his biggest heroes growing up were the previous world record holders Renaud Lavillenie and the legendary Sergey Bubka, who was a trendsetter in the sport. He was always fascinated with the history of the sport, and had a hunger to learn and grow (to improve his technique).

Sergey Bubka, Renaud Lavillenie, and Mondo Duplantis
Sergey Bubka, Renaud Lavillenie, and Mondo Duplantis. Photo Credit: Joerg Oegerli, Mitchell Media

This film is a reminder that pole vault is not so much a competition between other athletes, it’s mostly a mental competition between an athlete and the bar. It is food for thought and full of inspiration.

The Verdict

Overall, “Born to Fly” is a well-crafted sports film on the life and athletic career of Mondo Duplantis. Director Brennan Robideaux deserves to be commended for a job well done, especially for brining Duplantis’ story to life. “Born to Fly” garners an A rating.

To learn more about “Born to Fly,” visit its official homepage.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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