Facing Windows


Mixed or average reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 25
  2. Negative: 2 out of 25

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Critic Reviews

  1. Istanbul-born director Ferzan Ozpetek has outdone himself with this wise and ruminative mystery about memory, unfulfillment and yearning.
  2. Ozpetek is an enriching director. More than a presentation of its contents, every scene seems also to be a distillation of the matters that led to it. He can take a somewhat worn device--moving the camera around his people as they talk--and make it savory.
  3. The film is slick, beautifully acted and completely entrancing.
  4. Gentle and life-affirming, if too sentimental in the end.
  5. Poignant and carefully observed, the Italian drama Facing Windows portrays two consuming, illicit romances: one in the present, the other kept alive in faulty memory. The long-ago relationship holds far more intrigue.
  6. Girotti is especially evocative, his face an alternating current that switches from emptiness to alarm and back again.
  7. Ozpetek brings a straight love story and world politics into the mix, but it's his brilliant cast which completes the connection.
  8. Facing Windows is rich stuff. Maybe too rich. But thanks to fine performances and a grounded script, the pieces of this intriguing little puzzle all manage to fit.
  9. Some lovely photography and even Mezzogiorno's hot-blooded performance fail to keep Facing Windows from feeling fractured.
  10. Ozpetek moves things along at a snail's pace and lays the sentiment down thickly. But it's a potent tale, wonderfully acted by Mezzogiorno and Massimo Girotti as the old man.
  11. 60
    Blends history and mystery into an entertaining, if somewhat slight, romance.
  12. 60
    Far from a simple, feel-good story of self-discovery, Facing Windows delivers a challenging examination of loneliness and human interaction.
  13. Despite its surreal touches and an improbable story that piles on the metaphors, the movie, which has a rich, honey-dripping score by Andrea Guerra, maintains a tone of refined heart-tugging realism.
  14. There's something diverting but not wildly stirring about this Italian drama.
  15. 60
    Gets a little soapy, but the dismal working-class milieu and the measured performances by Mezzogiorno and Girotti (a venerable Italian actor who died last year ) bolster the sense of solidity.
  16. 50
    Probably best skipped - unless you have a penchant for shallow, "comfortable" foreign films that offer obvious messages and never attempt to challenge the viewer.
  17. 50
    Gets off to a worthy start, but falls apart about halfway through.
  18. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Beautiful to look at and acted with full and tempestuous conviction, it still seems to be taking place in an apartment far across the way.
  19. Reviewed by: Deborah Young
    Only partially succeeds in interweaving questions of family loyalty with historical memory and the fate of Italian Jews in WW2.
  20. 40
    Structurally, it's ambitious, but emotionally the movie never quite connects, spending so much time laboring over its parallel storytelling and its cosmic connections that the characters remain at arm's length, as intangible as reflections in glass.
  21. This too-sentimental drama does feature a sterling performance by Giovanna Mezzogiorno as a love-struck housewife dissatisfied with her lot, thus providing the only watchable element of an otherwise disappointing movie.
  22. 40
    Girotti has no magical powers, but his dementia has a way of coming and going at just the right time to move the story and themes wherever director Ferzan Ozpetek and co-writer Gianni Romoli want them to go.
  23. Stuck somewhere between melodrama and the flat tone of an "issues"-oriented television miniseries.
  24. 30
    Blends past and present to draw some utterly stupefying parallels.
  25. There's way too much schmaltz in the mix. Even the musical score bombs: Throbbing, eerie techno simply does not suit a character trapped in the 1940s.

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