November 1, 2016
By Tiffany Skelnik
“The Accountant”, directed by Gavin O’Connor, stars Ben Affleck, Anna Kendrick, JK Simmons and Jon Bernthal. The film follows Christian Wolff, an accountant, played by Affleck, who “uncooks” the books for clients and finds trouble along the way as the FBI closes in and a client’s hired gun sets his sights on ending Christian’s activities for good.
Much more than a straight action film, “The Accountant” presents a challenge for viewers and a sense of mystery in the main character. The film grants access to three connecting paths through incredibly strong performances. Ben Affleck as Christian Wolff delivers a compelling performance. It is revealed early in the film that Christian is different, and Affleck manages to convey this difference well without turning to stereotypes. Within his performance, he manages to convey Christian’s unique circumstances and his resolve to protect those around him from a hazardous profession.
Anna Kendrick plays Dana Cummings whose offer to help Christian places her in danger. Dana as an individual with difficulties of her own who is pulled into Christian’s world unwillingly, but also wants to become his friend. Even though Kendrick is outshone in this film, the chemistry between her and Affleck makes for some touching moments of levity amidst the mystery.
JK Simmons plays FBI Director Ray King. Simmons’ performance as the FBI Director is complex. Simmons’ portrayal of King is exceedingly gray and his motives cannot be found out easily. This choice makes for some fantastic push and pull with his costars including Cynthia Addai-Robinson who plays Medina, his partner in finding Christian Wolff. Addai-Robinson plays her role brilliantly, providing an interesting contrast to Simmons’ character.
Jon Bernthal plays Brax who is trying to stop Christian’s activities. His performance was strong as he ruthlessly did whatever has to be done to get closer to finding Christian Wolff.
The film provided an excellent balance of story and action, giving viewers a chance to get to know the main character for which the movie is titled. Viewers are given pieces of the puzzle as the characters are making for an engaging experience. There is a good balance of present and past in this film, although it may be a bit slow moving for some. Flashbacks are not overdone, but applied at just the right moments to shed light on events that have occurred.
I’d highly recommend this film if you enjoy challenges and mysteries.