When someone says the word Accountant, which words immediately jump to your mind?
Numbers, Boring, Yawn, Candyfloss, Money, Office Job and Dull were just a few of the PG13 words that came to my mind. But if this film is any indication of what an Accountant actually does, I’m sure applications would decuple over night. Don’t let the average reviews stop you seeing a film that I would consider an unexpected delight, although the trailer set a different tone to what the film turned out to be, it was worth the ruse to watch a unique and clever diamond in the rough.
Let me tell you why.
Christian Wolff’s (Ben Affleck) story unfolds in a multi-linear narrative as we understand the struggles he faced as a child. Diagnosed with having a high functioning form of autism and raised by a single father in the army, Christian and his brother learnt to fight, fall and most importantly get back up. With the things his mind can comprehend, including remembering vast amounts of information and being able to mentally solve complicated sums, Christian makes a name for himself amongst the seedy underbelly of organised crime: The Accountant.
From his partner; a mysterious British woman who only ever contacts him by phone, Christian learns that someone within the US Department of Treasury is trying to track him down. Deciding to lay low, he takes on a clean – and real – accounting job for a robotics company where he meets fellow numbers lover Dana Cummings (Anna Kendrick), where they follow the numbers and stumble upon something worth killing for.
I wanted to add that I really liked the way that they portrayed the love interest (Kendrick), and her relationship with Wolff, it felt true to character for all its awkwardness. However the Treasury side of things felt slow, staged and far fetched, if anything it took away from the pace and dynamic.
Stealing a metaphor from within the film itself, the best way I can describe it as, is a puzzle. There were numerous separate stories taking place, and they all wove in and out of one another, often making things confusing as you tried to piece together how everything was connected. But then an arc you had forgotten about would suddenly appear in the next scene, throwing a spanner into the works. As annoyed as this made me, all was forgiven once I saw the bigger picture and everything came together in a nice like package.
The Accountant was genuine laugh out loud funny, with sprinkles of witticism thrown into the mix. It had layers both in character and plot and made me really like Ben Affleck. I know it sounds silly but a character can really influence your standing on an actor. (I couldn’t watch an Orlando Bloom film for years after watching Troy) He played Christian Wolff exceptionally and although this may be a little taboo to say: I think he should be nominated for an award for his portrayal (people have won for a lot less to be honest), his depiction was inviting and realistic and I will happily be held accountable (pun) for telling everyone who will listen to go and watch it.
My final thought on the Accountant is whether it could be franchised. I won’t throw any spoilers out there, and I know I am being selfish for wanting to prolong the story by potentially ruining something that is so great on its own… but I can see the potential in there being at least another two films produced. The character of Christian Wolff/The Accountant has more layers to him, and probably one hell of a deeper backstory that I for one would be interested to see unfold on the big screen… Or as a TV series?