By Gustavo Buenrostro
A non-linear story with lots of action and good performances, “The Accountant” is a film audiences may be split on.
This film is not for everyone. Some elements of the film may deter some of the audience with its pacing.
The film starts of very slow with exposition. However there is a point to this as the film is trying to establish who Christian Wolff is, played by Ben Affleck,
Wolff is someone with autism. For Wolff the autism is directed towards math, which is why he became an accountant.
Wolff’s father, played by Robert C. Treveiler, wants Wolff to grow up already and to take life head on, so he has Wolff and his brother Braxx trained to protect themselves.
The film spends a lot of time setting up characters but doesn’t reveal their motivation until later in the film.
Ray King, played by J.K. Simmons, is looking for Wolff because Wolff’s clients are dangerous criminals and King wants to know how Wolff is tied in with them.
But that is what he tells Marybeth Medina, played by Cynthia Addai- Robinson, an agent King blackmailed into helping find where Wolff is.
King’s motives are revealed much later in the film to be more personal than previously thought.
The fight choreography in this film is well done. Toward the ending of the film, Wolff is looking for someone and has to fight through half a dozen men to get to that person.
The shootouts are done nicely and the fights feel real.
There is a scene where Wolff is fighting with one of the mercenaries and the mercenary begins to gain the upper hand.
The close-up shots of Affleck’s face make the fight feel claustrophobic. The performances all around were solid.
Almost every character was given a motivation, giving the actors something to work with. Affleck especially did a great job portraying an autistic person.
Whenever Wolff wouldn’t finish something, he would start having a breakdown and get angry, which Affleck played very well.
Anna Kendrick also had a strong performance. Many times her character, Dana Cumming, brings some light-heartedness to the film’s more serious moments to bring the audience back. Kendrick has great chemistry with Ben Affleck.
When they first meet, the awkwardness between the two was humorous at times because of Wolff being antisocial and Cummings being overly enthusiastic.
One of the faults the movie has is the pacing.
The pacing is slow in the beginning but then it picks up with all the action, before then slowing down again.
The movie feels longer than it should be because of the pacing.
When the film slows down, it’s to add more exposition so the audience can care more about characters action.
It seemed like the director Gavin O’Connor wanted to make sure the audience cares about the characters but didn’t want to hold down the film with all the exposition being in the beginning of the film.
While it is an interesting idea, the film suffers because of it. Overall this film is fun to watch with some audience members even enjoying the exposition because the characters are written well.
The film is rated for strong violence and language throughout.