2011 / Director. Rodman Flender.
Anyone who follows such things will know that Conan O'Brien spent years preparing to take over the Tonight Show from Jay Leno. Seven months into his new hosting position Leno had a change of heart and O'Brien was out. It was a messy and turbulent chapter that's been well documented. A condition of his payout was that Conan could not appear on television for the following 6 months. Pent up with anger, he devised an arduous live tour that proved to be far more gruelling than he could have imagined. CONAN O'BRIEN CAN'T STOP documents this chapter in his life and we follow him as he hops from city to city, performing to sell out crowds. I had been wanting to see this film for ages and finally caught up with it tonight. I have a lot of time for Conan and love his more spontaneous comedy (as opposed to his scripted stuff). What the film delivers is a fascinating fly-on-the-wall look at the weight such an undertaking has on a man. At first filled with elation and excitement to be performing outside of TV-land the tour soon proves to be little more than bothersome meet-n-greets, photo ops and sneaky obligations. When all Conan wants to do is unwind and chill out between shows he is forced to be "ON" at all times and can't shake off pesky brown-nosers and ass-kissers (celebrities included). At first there's no feeling sorry for him as much of the fanfare is of his own doing but when there's only so much a man can take and no one around him is listening to his requests, you truly feel for him. With the cameras always on him there is no question that he is in character for most of this documentary but when we get a real glimpse of the man behind the mask, its fascinating. At all times he tries damn hard to be a nice guy but the circumstances and environment around him turn him into a real asshole... The film and it's portrayal was not what I was expecting (refreshing) and his actual live show looked terrible... but spending time with Conan and his entourage was enlightening. Now he's back on television with his own show and isn't looking back. He's a guy who brought none of the shit upon himself and dealt with it fearlessly. CONAN O'BRIEN CAN'T STOP is an almighty "fuck you" to NBC and Jay Leno (I hate Jay Leno and so does Conan).