Directed by Deb Shoval
85 min | 2016 | USA | Not Rated
Principal Cast: Lola Kirke, Breeda Wool, Dale Soules
Joey lives in rural Pennsylvania and is spending her summer serving ice cream at the county fair—working toward no apparent goal. After a visit to the U.S. Army recruiting office, the recent high school graduate appears to have found a path to a new future: a life in the service. Just as she enlists and becomes shackled to this new life, she meets Rayna, a 27-year-old, vivacious, sexy mother of two. From the moment Joey lays eyes on Rayna, she can’t help but be infatuated.
From its inception, their love affair is shrouded in secrecy. The morning after the first night’s drunken evening together, Joey has an awkward walk-of-shame moment when she meets Rayna’s two young daughters and they ask if she wants to stay for a lunch of macaroni and cheese. The major problem, of course, is that Rayna is married.
When Joey’s mother announces that it is time for her to move out, and Rayna makes it clear that their trysts will never become anything more, Joey must make choices about her future with limited possibilities. With Rayna’s encouragement and no other viable options for housing or employment, Joey enters the army. Days before deployment to Afghanistan and still wildly in love, Joey returns home with plans for Rayna and her kids.
Awol is a love story. It is a rural love story and a lesbian love story, and it vividly portrays the choices that young people in this country have—and don’t have.
Official Selection: 2016 Tribeca Film Festival