Ben Affleck, as has been noted several times, has just been through one of his downward spirals. He’s had the crash—divorce, high-profile professional embarrassment—and now it’s time for The Climb. The Climb is the part Affleck thrives on, he just loves proving everyone wrong. He thrives on underdog juice, and somehow a rich, handsome, famous, white American guy keeps finding ways to make himself the underdog so he can keep guzzling that hater fuel and perpetuating the cycle. His latest hard slog back to the top, that will only ever require a modicum of public humility and one successful movie to complete, may or may not involve Jennifer Garner, but it will definitely involve his latest movie, The Accountant.
The first trailer for The Accountant was just released and it does look pretty good. It’s Affleck looking tense and super serious, with voice over from JK Simmons, a shot of adorable Anna Kendrick being everyone’s imaginary best friend and saying what we’re all thinking after peering into Ben Affleck’s closet—who are you?—and enough guns and punching to entice the action crowd. Affleck stars as an accountant who is apparently using his nerd skills to screw over drug dealers by “uncooking” their cartel books. Honestly, I had to watch the trailer twice to make sure I had that right because the rest of the trailer sort of makes him look like the bad guy.
The accountant appears to be an assassin as well? The whole thing has a very Bourne feel, which is fun because of course, Ben’s best bud Matt Damon is the once and future Bourne. So part of his Climb involves making a knock-off version of his popular and well-liked best friend’s most famous role which won’t in any way eat at the dark places deep down on the inside.
Are people mad about the accountant being autistic, though? I’m not even sure why that needs to be part of the story. He could just be a super-smart mathematician. It seems like they’re using autism as the hook for the character, like Jason Bourne and his amnesia. I don’t think that we need more stuff out in the world stigmatizing people on the spectrum as potentially violent loners, so I’m side-eyeing The Accountant. It could well be that within the full context of the movie there is a compelling reason for this character to be autistic that will pay off in a meaningful way. Or it’s just a cheap gimmick because someone thought “quirky Jason Bourne starring Ben Affleck” will make a lot of money. People suck so they’re probably not wrong.