Giovanna (Giovanna Mezzogiorno) and Filippo (Filippo Nigro) live in a small apartment in Rome with their two small children. Poverty has taken the life out of their marriage and what remains is two stubborn people squabbling all the time. He works a night shift while she is employed at a chicken factory. One day while arguing on the streets, they see a very disoriented elderly man (Massimo Girotti) who says his name in Simone. Filippo's heart goes out to him, and he brings him home after a futile effort to determine who is he is at the police station. Simone has a tattoo on his arm, and Giovanna realizes that he must be a Jewish survivor of the World War II concentration camps.

She takes him to the Jewish section of the city and bumps into Lorenzo (Raoul Bova), a handsome bachelor who lives across the way from her. For quite some time, she has been watching him out her window and is surprised to learn that he knows who she is. It turns out they both are voyeurs. They meet several times to find out more about Simone's identity but soon find that they are sexually attracted to each other. It turns out that the elderly Jew had some similar obstacles to overcome years ago in 1943 when he was a baker's assistant and was madly in love with another man. In an act of heroism, Simone saved many Jews but not the life of the only one who mattered to him.

Ferzan Ozpetek directs this touching drama with a delicate touch and allows the film's many themes to slowly bloom. Although Giovanna at first resents Simone's intrusion into her already messy life, she is delighted to find out that he was once a pastry chef. One of her hobbies is preparing pies and other desserts for a local bar. Simone sadly and poignantly tells her: "You've transformed your passion into a hobby." But she lacks is the courage to quit her boring job and strike out in a new direction doing what she loves to do in the kitchen.

Her encounter with Lorenzo is not all that she expects, and it is interesting to note that the filmmaker has chosen to have this character look exactly like the Clark Kent. The point in clear. Many romances take us by surprise because we want Superman and end up with an unremarkable Clark Kent. The finale of Facing Windows is very satisfying and signals Ozpetek's firm grasp of the necessity for every person to find his or her special passion, stay focused, and throw everything into it.