In the The Accountant, Ben Affleck portrays Christian Wolff who leads a double-life of a standard CPA accountant, as well as an accountant who works for the most dangerous criminals across the world. While leading his extraordinary double-life, Christian suffers from a form of autism which greatly affects his socialization, mental, and physical health. As the film progresses, Christian evolves from his reclusive, afflicting social barriers, to becoming a considerate, but focused man who only wants to be accepted in society.
When the movie began, it did not begin as I expected it would. After the first scene I thought “Am I in the right theatre?” I actually really appreciated how the filmmakers decided to start the movie because I was immediately buzzing with questions about how everything unfolded.
The screenplay of The Accountant was nothing less than smart, fresh, and highly entertaining to watch. The story was well written as it really exemplifies Christian’s internal conflict to adjust to society, as well as his external conflict to escape his enemies. Throughout the movie, flashback scenes of Christian as a child made me sympathize his inevitable struggles of his autism. The viewer sees that the Wolff family saw Christian as a burden than a family member. Without Christian’s mother, his father was left to raise him and Braxton (Christian’s younger brother). Being a military man, Christian’s father went to harsh extremes to help Christian acclimate to society by forcing actions upon him that would make him extremely uncomfortable as an autistic child. He did this to teach Christian that society will not adjust to his needs; he must adjust to society’s standards by practicing grueling tolerance against his autism. These flashbacks really supplement the screenplay as they develop Christian’s character to better help the viewer understand why Christian behaves and copes the way he does. During the current time in which the movie is set, the plot is is composed of twists, unbelievable action, complexity, and slight humor which overall makes a high-quality screenplay for The Accountant. I believe there could be a chance that the screenplay could get an Academy Award Nomination, but not a win.
The acting of The Accountant could not have been done better. Ben Affleck (Argo, Good Will Hunting) did an accurate, incredible job of portraying the conflicting character of Christian’s mathematical brilliance with his autistic battles. The Academy Award winning actor’s mannerisms of blowing on his fingers before eating, separating his food so nothing touches, his self-punishment he performs every night, and his meticulous organizational behavior all show Affleck’s accuracy of a man who suffers from autism.
The direction of The Accountant by Gavin O’Connor (Jane Got a Gun, Warrior) was also extremely well done. Being what I consider a smaller director in Hollywood, and not having heard of him until I saw this movie, I see his direction of The Accountant being a big milestone in his career. I expect O’Connor’s work only to grow in popularity and quality, as shown with The Accountant.
Overall, I give The Accountant a four out of five stars based on its strong screenplay, well-developed acting and direction. I do not foresee the film getting a considerable amount of Academy Award recognition, but I do recommend the movie for people looking for an action-filled, but heart-wrenching film.