A bit late with this post as I saw this on release date but hey, I’ve been busy.
First, let’s get this out of the way. This is not a Jason Bourne action type flick. This is a thriller with action sequences.
Ben Affleck plays Christian Wolff, a person with a certain type of autism/aspergers and through a series of flashbacks we see how he is raised as the son of a military man who ends up taking care of his sons the only way he knows how after his wife leaves them. She has left because Christian’s condition is something she cannot handle and has tried to convince her husband to get Christian admitted to a special facility that could help him. His father refuses this idea saying that in the real world he will have to get by as he is and learn to adjust.
In the present day, Christian is working as an accountant with a small office in a strip mall outside of Chicago. After an encounter with a local farming couple, whom are given tax advice to help them with their situation, we quickly get into the secret that Christian is leading. He communicates with a British sounding woman over the phone to get some new assignments. Instead of taking someone out, he is given an actual job that involves accounting at a nearby corporation. Here is he meets Dana played by Anna Kendrick. She is in the corporation’s accounting department and is as anal when it comes to details as Wolff. They quickly discover where the money was taken from and hidden. Once events start moving it is made clear that the corporation is doing shady deals before their move in taking the company public.
While all this takes place, we now have another hitman being employed by the corporation. They have no idea that Wolff is more than an accountant and want “The Assassin” played by Jon Bernthal, taken out so that they can take the missing money information and hide it before they go public. Also, at the same time, the head of the U.S. Treasury, played by J.K. Simmons is after Wolff. Hi is about to retire and has one last case to clean up. He is blackmailing one of his analysts who had been hiding a criminal background from her childhood, into helping him solve the case. Simmons motives are not clear at first. We think he is just trying to pad his stats for the media and his record. As the story progresses, a startling truth will come about his affiliation with Wolff.
After an attack at the farming couples house, where The Assassin’s men have tracked Wolff, he quickly races to protect Dana, knowing any info on him would lead back to her. After in intense close quarters fight at her apartment, they escape and he leaves her at a hideout, protected while he heads off to confront his new enemy, all while against the advice of his British boss.
Naturally there are a few twists, one which was predictable, in a good way, that you will likely see coming, and a second one that I did not see coming and brought a smile to my face at the end of the movie.
This is another fantastic acted movie by all involved. I have heard and read that some that it was a slow-paced film, I did not think that at all. I think they felt that way because this is not a pure action movie. This movie takes a straight look at who could be a secret hitman. There is no Bondish extravagance to the hitmen. There is heart in this movie, from the flashbacks to the present day pieces with Kendrick and Bernthal.
I strongly encourage you to check out this movie. In a year of mostly disappointing blockbusters, we are getting really strong films this autumn and it looks like even better ones come this December. Oscar season will be upon us and strong films are what we need to finish off the year right.