Movie Review – The Accountant

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Movie Review - The AccountantTrigger Warning: Bright flashing lights and loud music in certain sections, which could be a trigger if you’re overly sensitive to stimuli. Guns, murder and blood, as one would expect in an assassin-type thriller.

Ben Affleck, as the titular accountant, does a nice job portraying someone with high-functioning Autism. As someone with Autism myself, I’m overly interested in characters “like me.” Affleck, as Christian Wolff, is more of a Rainman/Dr. House type of autistic, with an abnormally high talent for numbers and patterns. There is even an amusing throwaway homage to Rainman math. It’s important to realize that most autistics are NOT savants, however, and I don’t really like the media making this such a commonly portrayed thing. The autistic moments I appreciated most were: the on-spot childhood scenes, Wolff’s inability to recognize sarcasm and facial cues (even including a facial cheat sheet for emotions), Wolff’s kitchen rituals, his obsessive interests, and the scenes with his private over-stimulation therapy. While I’d never subject myself to the kind of loud music, blinking lights, and tactile torture he commits on his own body, I can see where his fath er started this at a young age, and that Wolff found comforting in its familiarity. I’ve never heard of this kind of therapy in real life, but it’s in line with Wolff’s father’s views on “curing” his son. Cue the nightly 15 minute sessions of sensory torture.

Autism aside, it’s a decent film, with interesting characters (and GREAT character actors) and an accessible plot line. Dan and I saw the “twist” coming an hour early, but guessing the reveal doesn’t detract from enjoying this suspense-thriller. There’s just the right amount of humor (the audience had a good 4 or 5 out loud laugh moments), the actors sold their roles, and the action scenes were definitely exciting. Wolff was a little too impervious to bullets (he doesn’t actually play a superhero in this outing, although the viewer has to suspend that belief here). The romance elements were believable, and I enjoyed how that realistically worked out in the end (Note: Poker Dogs). And lastly, JK Simmons ROCKS.

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Whether or not Wolff’s father raised him in a responsible way is open to debate (Dan felt one way, I felt the other), and that’s interesting to discuss after the movie concludes. Overall, I felt the movie succeeded, with a nice balance of tension, characterization, humor, romance and surprise.

Grade: B

About The Peetimes: I’m pretty happy with the Peetimes for this movie. Overall I would recommend either of the first two Peetimes. The third has a dramatic scene in it, but most of that scene was in the previews.

There are no extra scenes during, or after, the end credits of The Accountant. (What we mean by Anything Extra.)

Rated (R) for strong violence and language throughout
Genres: Action, Crime, Drama

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