You wouldn’t think off the top of your head that Lola Kirke would be the intuitive choice to play a small-town lesbian — scooping ice cream at the carnival, fixing cars, signing up for the Army — whose relationship with a married woman gets her swept up into making some big decisions.
However after watching AWOL – the new film from writer/director Deb Shoval which is now streaming on Netflix – you really buy it.
Kirke plays Joey, a young women from a nowheresville Pennsylvania town, who falls in love with Rayna (Breeda Wool).
The two meet at a local carnival and quickly fall for each other but circumstances threaten to crush their romance before it can even begin.
AWOL understands first and foremost that while love is easy, relationships (and arguably everything else in the world is hard). Sometimes what you want and what your environment is able to allow you to have are two very different things.
It’s the mark of a good film that it’s got you as worried about a character’s emotional well-being as much as AWOL has you worried about Joey.