By Isaac Feldman
Ben Affleck is back to kick ass! And thank goodness not with a bat on his chest. Affleck stars in The Accountant, directed by Gavin O’Connor (Warrior/Pride and Glory). The Accountant is a film about turning obsessive compulsive disorders and mild autism into something almost super human. It’s fun to see Affleck play the Jekyll and Hyde role, jumping from a daytime math freak to a very discreet vigilante. It’s a premise that sounds farfetched, but as long as you take the blue pill, The Accountant is an extremely enjoyable ride.
The Accountant follows a young Christian Wolff (Affleck) from his early days as a young misunderstood teen with uncontrollable OCD to his present position as a CPA accountant. Wolff isn’t who he claims to be. He’s dealt with international “book cooking” for many dangerous clients, which has drawn the eyes and ears of Senior CIA Treasury agent Ray King (JK Simmons, Spiderman). King is close to retirement and wants to nab this uncatchable accountant as a final trophy. Taking a huge risk, King brings in the young and exuberant Marybeth Medina (Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Star Trek) to help him track down the Wolff in sheep’s clothing (see what I did there?). Medina aids King’s hunt for the accountant’s real identity.
Now of course this wouldn’t be Hollywood if we didn’t have our tax handling, glasses wearing Wolff knowing a little hand to hand combat right? RIGHT! Wolff is good with numbers, I mean like really freaking good with numbers, but he can take down and dismantle a small army of henchmen if need be. It’s Bourne Ultimatum meets Good Will Hunting (both Matt Damon movies, who is Affleck’s best friend…Weird…). The weakest part of the movie is the back story. The director does a decent job explaining Wolff’s origin and exceptional physical skills.
The cast of The Accountant is definitely a strong point of the film. Anna Kendrick (Into The Woods) is light hearted enough to balance Affleck’s cold persona. The two worked very nicely on screen together. They provide the film’s few comic relief moments. Jon Bernthal (DareDevil) delivers again as a chiseled jaw hitman character that we’ve grown accustomed to him portraying. Others, like John Lithgow (Interstellar) and Jeffery Tambor (Transparent), have acute roles. Neither annoyed nor interrupted the flow of the movie, but added believable motives.
What jumps off the screen is how beautifully shot the action sequences are. The choreography in The Accountant is super sharp as well. It reminds me of a Keanu Reeves shootout, where gunplay is smooth and the weaponry is used for slick takedowns. What the film does well is balance the pacing between plot building and action.
If you can’t tell, I liked The Accountant. It’s a film that I thought about hours after leaving the theatre, which is a strong sign for a PLUS movie. It’s not over complicated and ties all loose ends. Without giving away anything, CHECK IT OUT!
MY SCORE: B-