Title: The Accountant Director: Gavin O’Connor Year: 2016 Run time: 2hrs 8m
“Christian Wolff (Ben Affleck) is a math savant with more affinity for numbers than people. Behind the cover of a small-town CPA office, he works as a freelance accountant for some of the world’s most dangerous criminal organizations. With the Treasury Department’s Crime Enforcement Division, run by Ray King (J.K. Simmons), starting to close in, Christian takes on a legitimate client: a state-of-the-art robotics company where an accounting clerk (Anna Kendrick) has discovered a discrepancy involving millions of dollars. But as Christian uncooks the books and gets closer to the truth, it is the body count that starts to rise.”
2:09 – Clever to approach at the edge so there’s no floor creaking. 3:57 – “My husband’s in the army, which means we all are.” 7:37 – Love a bit of accounts in a film. 17:54 – Well, it’s not what I would do with a Winnebago but it’ll do. 18:11 – Lightsaber!! 23:21 – I really don’t think anyone has described an accountant as “nothing short of supernatural” before. 31:58 – Anna Kendrick being a junior cost accountant is cute as a button. 43:11 - $61 million! 47:12 – “It’s very hard for me to interpret why people do what they do.” 53:36 – Good god, that gun is huge. How can you carry it? 55:35 – Now the people have to explain away two dead bodies on their farm. 59:51 – “What did he do? Hit him over the head with an adding machine?” Accountant jokes. 1:05:81 – Didn’t know that about Lewis Carroll. 1:09:36 – “…even though I want to.” About the most heartbreaking thing I’ve ever heard. 1:19:19 – Don’t really follow her train of thought, but if it helps the story, I guess. 1:36:23 – This is a lot of tell, don’t show. 1:43:33 – He’s definitely a shoot first ask questions later kind of guy.
I genuinely don’t know how to feel about this one. One half of me really liked it - it’s unusual for a Hollywood movie to include chatter about profit and loss and cost accountants in this way, which was fun. It’s a good thriller in terms of structure, I like dipping back to see how Wolff became the person he is today, and I really liked the relationship with Kendrick’s character.
But at the end, I was just left with so many questions, and plot twists that didn’t quite make sense. How and why was Justine doing what she was doing? What happened to the dead bodies at the farm and in Kendrick’s apartment? Where was the brother this whole time? Was Wolff really in prison just for a bit of a punch up? Why did his moral code not stop him working for the bad guys in the first place? What actually was the embezzling plot? Didn’t the CEO think killing everyone around him would point the finger in his direction? What were the Treasury people actually investigating?
All a bit more of a mystery than a thriller and it left me more irritated than satisfied.