Gavin O’Connor delivers a fresh and tight action thriller with a vulnerable and sensitive storyline that is original and unique. The Accountant is a film strongly rooted in familial dysfunction and childhood trauma that was executed quite bluntly. Autism is a very difficult subject to put on screen because of the representation and O’Connor did so tastefully, you could tell that they cared about telling Christian Wolff’s story and they didn’t tread lightly either. It is a very decent action thriller. O’Connor used very similar tropes but somehow added some originality to it and in this case underlining the typical action film with a mental illness.
The film itself may seem dry and bleak but we are fully immersed in Christian Wolff’s world. Ben Affleck is fantastic in this role and he captivates you within the first minute of meeting him. He carried the tone of Wolff extremely well throughout and didn’t falter once. He was calm, vulnerable and sarcastic yet powerful causing audiences to assess Wolff and piece him together. It is one of the most interesting characters Ben has portrayed and it was perfect for him. There was so much depth to his character and it’s because O’Connor expertly integrated flashbacks that linked his backstory. The children in the film all did a wonderful job with their characters and it did pull on your heartstrings, some moments were difficult to watch.
The film was executed in a way that the audience would be piecing together Wolff’s mind rather than wasting their time on the plot which was being spelled out by the FBI agents. It was a unique balance and I think that is what made it so interesting. The beginning dragged on a bit, I have to admit it could have been cut down but when the action sequences came up I was giddy. The techniques used were very different, the combat with martial arts allowed a different dimension to what action films could be like. O’Connor does a great job with filming the choreography as neatly as he could. Every single move was beautifully captured. I wanted more. I did, I wanted more fight scenes because of how amazing they were. They played off the subtle movements and they made an impact.
Ben Affleck was the driving force of this film and he lead a pretty damn powerful cast. He had a playful chemistry with Anna Kendrick, which I loved. J. K Simmons is always on point, Jon Bernthal was really good as well. Jeffrey Tambor and John Lithgow had small parts but they are obviously great. However, the secondary character that truly shined was Cynthia Addai-Robinson as Agent Medina. She, herself had her own backstory but her determination was great to see and it was wonderful to see a woman with that kind of power.
All in all, it is a great action thriller, filled with great action sequences, dry sarcasm and a couple of sweet plot twists. This is probably one of my favourite characters Ben Affleck has ever done and I’m very happy he took this on. Gavin O’Connor has so many wonderful ideas and I’m very excited to see what he does in the future.