It must have been a swell meeting when writer Bill Dubuque went in to pitch a movie about an accountant who not only knows how to add numbers, but also body counts. Somehow though, the ludicrous-sounding premise of the resulting The Accountant makes for a nicely entertaining action movie vehicle for an understated (to say the least) Ben Affleck, who kills as the accountant who kills.
Nice work if you can get it, and it turns out to be pretty lucrative for Christian Wolff (Affleck), a guy hired by mobsters to cook their books and hide their money. Affleck is a man of few words, and even fewer expressions. Turns out he suffers from a form of autism but that, in addition to making him less than lively to be around, also turned him into some sort of math savant. As I say in my video review above, there is more to this character than meets the eye, but it is all fun to watch even if it becomes a standard-issue — and very violent — action thriller in the end.
Hiring Wolff to help out a tech company run by John Lithgow is perky Anna Kendrick, who needs him to find $70 million missing in action in the books for her boss. It takes him virtually no time at all to do this, but that isn’t an end to their “relationship” as the inevitable bad guys led by Jon Bernthal turn up to wreak havoc.
This turn of events is no problem for Wolff, who also happens to have a stash of large shiny guns that would make the NRA foam at the mouth. It seems growing up he was brought up with this stuff by his military father who loves all things that kill. Add to that a profound ability at martial arts that would make even Jackie Chan proud, and you have the ingredients that make Affleck the perfect successor to Charles Bronson as the strong and silent killer in this type of film (remember the original The Mechanic?). There is no doubt fans of this genre will be pleased with what they see here.
It really appears that Affleck did his homework and learned some pretty good kicks, and he also seems comfortable with large guns. Watching him underplay all this is wryly amusing. This is a cool role for the actor who keeps adding action cred to his resume. Kendrick is lots of fun to have around, and the support cast is full of old pros like Lithgow, Jean Smart and J.K. Simmons. Gavin O’Connor handles the bloodletting in style, even if The Accountant doesn’t rewrite the rules of the genre. Mark Williams and Lynette Howell Taylor produced. Warner Bros releases it today.
Do you plan to see The Accountant? Let us know what you think.