The silent Shore Leave was the first film version of the Hubert Osborne play of the same name (later musicalized as Hit the Deck). Dressmaker Dorothy Mackaill falls in love with sailor Richard Barthelmess, despite the warnings of her sea captain father concerning the romantic habits of seafaring men. Sure enough, Barthelmess sails out of her life and forgets all about her. But Mackaill is firm in her belief that Barthelmess will return, and against that day repairs her dad's old ship as a "home" for the wayfaring gob. She waits for what seems like eons before Barthelmess sails back into her life.