Anchor-turned-actor Sheetal Shetty has donned the directorial hat for her debut film 'Window Seat' and comes out with a fresh perspective rather than sticking with formulaic subjects. In her debut film, Sheetal highlights the relationship between mental illness and crimes and adds in layers of romance, a missing person, a murder, and its investigation. It has an unexpected plot, and the big question is if it managed to keep the viewers on the edge of their seats. Raghu (Nirup Bhandari), a musician working in a resort, travels by train between Sagar and Talaguppa.
On his commute, Raghu sits by the window every single time to catch a glimpse of a home, which houses a young girl that he has a crush on. But the same girl brings shockwaves to his life. A series of twists and turns reveal the shocking truths of Raghu’s past, and there are multiple shades to his role. The movie shows how Raghu’s life intersects with those people around him.
A triangular love story also fits into the plot with Anjali (Armutha Iyengar), the resort owner, who is also in love with the musician. Will Raghu find justice, and who is the real culprit in what is brought out in this murder mystery? Window Seat, which revolves around love, life, and loss, is surrounded by a gloomy atmosphere and takes time to build up. The director manages to establish the present and the past of the protagonist and allows it to progress with its twists and turns.
At times, the plot seems to lose its grip, but the investigation is what makes the story forward. While the narration enables us to understand the plight of certain characters, in the end, it leaves it to the audience whether they want to sympathise with the protagonist’s situation. Sheetal, who had established herself in other fields before taking on her first directorial project, is slowly learning the craft. She has understood the basic techniques of filmmaking and skillfully manages to handle sensitive topics and complications of relationships.
Nirup Bhandari puts up a convincing portrayal of a role that required him to showcase various emotions. Sanjana Anand and Amrutha Iyenger’s characters symbolise a girl’s desire, love, and constraints. Lekha Naidu as the police officer Parvati excels in a neatly sketched role. Suraj, as a sidekick to the police officer, brings comic relief, and we have Ravi Shankar in a cameo and Madhusudhan Rao who perfectly fit in their respective roles.
The soothing music of Arjun Janya and good visuals from Vignesh Raj have added advantages to the film. A whodunit laced with love, and mystery with similarities to the Bollywood film The Girl on the Train, does not make for easy viewing and requires patience to understand the subject. However, it marks an unconventional attempt by Sheetal Shetty in her impressive debut.
Cast: Nirup Bhandari, Sanjana Anand, Amrutha Iyengar, Arjun Janya
Director: Sheetal Shetty