Ben Affleck, ‘The Accountant,’ crushes box office on opening weekend

Ben Affleck returns to the screen as an action hero

The Accountant
Screenshot from YouTube trailer for Warner Bros.' "The Accountant," starring Ben Affleck.

WASHINGTON, October 14, 2016 — Ben Affleck transforms an everyday accounting job into a high-stakes action packed cat-and-mouse game in his newly released Warner Bros. film, “The Accountant.” The movie follows the life of Christian Wolff (Affleck), a forensic accountant who has been hired by mobsters to cook the books and hide their dirty money. The secret behind Wolff’s quiet demeanor is the fact that he suffers from autism.

Wolff is hired by a tech company run by Lamar Blackburn (John Lithgow) to find $70 million missing from the books. Wolff is aided by Dana Cummings (Anna Kendrick), who is also being hunted by a bunch of goons out to silence the pair. Affleck’s Wolff succeeds in channeling the otherworldliness of living with autism without being too heavy handed about it. In a way, Affleck’s character is like Matt Damon’s Jason Bourne… but often wielding a calculator instead.

The film’s screenplay, penned by Bill Dubuque, keeps you interested by dropping subtle hints and clues like bread crumbs along to the way, to be picked up later and eventually pieced together.

The film features a strong supporting cast, which, in addition to Affleck, Lithgow and Kendrick includes Academy Award winner J.K. Simmons, Jon Bernthal, Jeffrey Tambor, and Cynthia Addai-Robinson. Notably, Simmons delivers another great performance, this time inhabiting his role as the veteran U.S. Treasury agent attempting to track Wolff down and put an end to the mob’s game.

“The Accountant” provides just the right combination of action and emotion, making its 128 minute running time pass by you before you even notice. As an action film, in fact, it works superbly, delivering the goods right when they’re needed. The body count is high and the kills are very well choreographed.

Like an increasing number of action thrillers these days, “The Accountant” also leaves behind a few subtle plot hooks capable of generating any number of sequels if this initial foray catches on–which it seems to be doing during this, its opening weekend. According to a report just out from Variety,

“Underlining Ben Affleck’s star power, “The Accountant” dominated moviegoing with a solid $24.7 million opening weekend at 3,222 North American sites. Sunday’s estimate came in significantly above expectations, which had ranged from $18 million to $20 million at the start of the weekend.”

Looks like action movie fans are liking what they’re seeing. True, “The Accountant” isn’t perfect and fails to tie up some loose ends. But it’s still one hell of a rollercoaster ride. Perhaps there will be more.

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