The Accountant

"OK"

The Accountant Review


While this slick dramatic thriller plays with some intriguing ideas and themes, it never actually breaks the surface, relying on silly plotting and simplistic moralising. It also uses autism as little more than a plot point. Still, it's sharply shot and edited to create plenty of interest, with comical asides and some intense action. So it's entertaining even if it's both preposterous and shallow.

It centres on Christian (Ben Affleck), a mild-mannered autistic accountant with a big secret: he's not only cooking the books for top gangsters around the world, but he's also an efficient killer. In his day job, he's hired by Lamar (John Lithgow) and his sister Rita (Smart) to locate an anomaly in their robotics company's books. Working with company accountant Dana (Anna Kendrick), Christian crunches the numbers and finds more than anyone expected. Meanwhile, Federal Agent Ray (J.K. Simmons) wants catch this mythical mob accountant-killer before he retires, so he coerces analyst Marybeth (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) into tracking him down. But just as they close in on Christian, so does hyperactive hitman Brax (Jon Bernthal).

The script by Bill Dubuque (The Judge) never even remotely holds water. Christian's autism provides some intriguing flashbacks, which build throughout the movie to a climactic moment, as his militaristic father cruelly treats his condition by sending him to Karate Kid-style training in Indonesia with his silently annoyed little brother. Where a real autistic child would revert into the horror of all of that, Christian emerges as adeptly skilled at engaging with everyone he meets and also able to fight more efficiently than experienced military commandos, whom he kills by the dozen as Brax and his army surround him. No, it makes absolutely no sense, but as a movie it's a rather amusing waste of time.

Affleck dives into the role with serious intent, catching some terrific details that bring Christian to life, even if his various characteristics are utterly incongruous. His prickly interaction with the always superb Kendrick is enjoyable, especially their fruitless flirtation. Veterans Simmons, Lithgow, Smart and Tambor (against type as Christian's prison-mate mentor) add plenty of texture. And Bernthal has a ball as the electrically charged Brax. But the script is so clunky that it telegraphs all of its plot points, dangling threads everywhere that hint at twisty revelations. In the end, there's just enough action and emotion to give the illusion of a satisfying final act. But the film isn't remotely as smart as it's trying to look.

Rich Cline

Watch the trailer for The Accountant:



The Accountant

Facts and Figures

Genre: Thriller

Run time: 128 mins

In Theaters: Friday 14th October 2016

Box Office USA: $61,263,224.00

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Production compaines: Zero Gravity Management, Warner Bros., Electric City Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 51%
Fresh: 88 Rotten: 85

IMDB: 7.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Lynette Howell Taylor,

Starring: as Chris, as Dana, J.K. Simmons as Ray King, as Brax, as Francis Silverberg, as Lamar Black, as Rita Blackburn, Cynthia Addai-Robinson as Marybeth Medina, Andy Umberger as Ed Chilton, Alison Wright as Justine, Daeg Faerch as French Bully (voice), Inder Kumar as Prisoner #64, as FBI in Charge

Also starring: ,

Contactmusic


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