** stars (out of four)
Ben Affleck’s new film The Accountant gets off to a decent start. Affleck plays an autistic numbers whiz whose talents have attracted international drugs and arms dealers. Looking for a respite from the danger, he takes an assignment tracking an irregularity in the books of a medical science corporation headed by John Lithgow. Here, the socially awkward Affleck begins a tentative friendship with the accountant who first suspected something was wrong (Anna Kendrick).
So far, so good. But the movie, directed by Gavin O’Connor (Miracle, Warrior), becomes increasingly ridiculous as it progresses. Affleck’s character isn’t just a numbers whiz. He’s also an expert marksman with a Bruce Lee-level skill in hand-to-hand combat. Just about every character has a tragic backstory. There are multiple plot twists that can be seen coming from miles away. This latter point would be forgivable if the twists enhanced the story or made logical sense. They don’t. On top of this, there’s little imagination to the action or fight scenes.
The Accountant feels like a movie that started with a good idea but was then run through a generic Hollywood story grinder and turned into something forgettable.