Ben Affleck is trying to make the pocket protector sexy, and fails miserably.
Affleck stars as Christian Wolff – a local accountant in the Chicago suburbs who uses that persona as an alias. In realty, he is an autistic mathematical and accounting wiz (and part ninja!) who helps clean up the crooked books of the most vile collection of deplorables ever assembled. It may pay well, but he’s helping drug dealers, ruthless dictators and more.
His latest job seems to be just as lucrative, but much safer. A low level accountant, Dana (Anna Kendrick), at a robotics company run Lamar Black (John Lithgow) has discovered a possible anomaly in the corporation’s books. Someone might be stealing, and Wolff has been called in to figure it out, which puts Dana and him in severe danger.
Who is the thief?
The Accountant is a solid movie for an hour, then it needs to be audited for melodrama and twists and turns that would make The Young and The Restless jealous.
Writer Bill Dubuque and director Gavin O’Connor are trying to do too much.
We have the story of Wolff and his autism with too many flashbacks to his past. It helps to have some background, but none of this is all that illuminating.
Then, we get the story of his troubled childhood and the crazy father who trained him to be a killing machine, which makes the premise a bit too over the top. Sure, he’s the accountant who is part-Batman. This angle must have been the suggestion of a 13-year old boy.
Then, we have the ill-fitting love story between Dana and Wolff where the audience is supposed to believe a good looking gal who is ten to fifteen years younger than this guy is supposed to get all turned on because he is good at multiplication (one of many moments that has the audience laughing in disbelief and mockery).
Let’s not forget to squeeze in the tales of his Treasury Department pursuers, Ray King (JK Simmons) and Marybeth Medina (Cynthia Addai-Robinson), because they must have some sort of clause in their contract about having a big speech in at least one scene.
And, O’Connor and Dubuque want to tie up everything in a perfect, much too neat and overly contrived bow, which brings in moments and facts that never seemed to be important until they decided to force some meaning onto them.
By the end, The Accountant has become a bad comedy as it falls apart scene by scene.
1 ½ Waffles (Out of 4)
The Accountant is rated R for strong violence and language throughout.