Shoes ★★★★

There's a twinned pair of motifs - one involving hands, one involving feet - that include poetic close-ups as powerful as any I've seen in a film from the 1910s, so here's the expected huzzah for Lois Weber, one of the most audacious visual storytellers of her generation. Also one of the most openly moralistic, which gets in this film's way more than a little bit, although I do love the fine balance the film strikes of being so openly concerned with prostitution while being so gentle and circumspect about pulling prostitution into its narrative. The subtle filmmaking and the immensely unsubtle script are a curious and maybe unstable fit, but they create something weirdly galvanising and exciting.