Pioneer woman filmmaker Lois Weber weaves a beautifully simple story of one shop girl’s struggles into a heartbreaking cinematic masterpiece. Filmed on the streets of Los Angeles — including a remarkable scene in Pershing Square and another in front of Woolworth’s on Broadway — Weber follows the daily travails of Eva Meyer, whose meager wages from her job at a five-and-dime store are the sole financial support for three younger sisters, a struggling mother, and a father who prefers beer and penny dreadfuls to work. When there is barely enough to cover the grocer’s bill, Eva is forced to patch the holes in the soles of her shoes with cardboard. But with each rainy day and every splinter, her plight becomes more painful, and finally intolerable. With no solution in sight, Eva is forced to consider other options. Weber’s brand-new discovery, sixteen-year-old Mary MacLaren (resembling a young Jennifer Lawrence) is the embodiment of youthful innocence and too-early world-weariness. Social activist filmmaker Weber meant Shoes to be a plea for women’s equality (women’s suffrage was still a hard-fought political goal) and the right to sexual freedom, The Shoes restoration by the EYE Filmmuseum in Amsterdam combined a Dutch nitrate print and a 1930s American “comedic” reissue of the film called Unshod Maiden, found at the Library of Congress. Thanks to the recent discovery of the original script and intertitles in the 16mm microfilm files at NBC/Universal, the Milestone edition more closely reflects the original film. Prominent musicians and composers Donald Sosin and Mimi Rabson have created a mesmerizing and moving score.