Margarita with a Straw

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Margarita with a Straw
Margarita, with a Straw - poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Shonali Bose[1]
Produced by Shonali Bose
Nilesh Maniyar
Written by Shonali Bose
Starring Kalki Koechlin[2]
Sayani Gupta
Music by Mickey McCleary
Cinematography Anne Misawa
Edited by Monisha R Baldawa
Release date
  • 8 September 2014 (2014-09-08) (TIFF)
  • 17 April 2015 (2015-04-17)
Running time
140 minutes
Country India
Language Hindi
Budget 65 million[3]
Box office 74 million

Margarita with a Straw is a 2014 Indian drama film directed by Shonali Bose. It stars Kalki Koechlin, who plays Laila, a teenager with cerebral palsy.[4][5][6] Revathy, Sayani Gupta, and William Moseley play supporting roles. The movie talks about struggle with the normal activities in her life. Margarita with a Straw was one of the five projects selected for the Work In Progress Lab of Film Bazaar 2013.[7][8]

The film made its world premiere on 8 September 2014 as part of the Contemporary World Cinema Programme at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). It went on to be screened at Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival in Estonia, BFI London Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) and Istanbul Film Festival.[9][10][11][12] It was released in India on 17 April 2015.[13]


Laila (Kalki Koechlin) is a teenager with cerebral palsy who uses a wheelchair. She is a student at Delhi University and an aspiring writer who writes lyrics and creates electronic sounds for an indie band at the university. Laila falls for the lead singer of the college band and is heartbroken when she is rejected.

She soon overcomes this phase, when she gets a scholarship for a semester at New York University and moves there with her traditional Maharashtrian mother Shubhangini (Revathi). Living in Manhattan, she meets an attractive young man named Jared (William Moseley) in her creative writing class, who is assigned to help her in typing. She also meets the fiery young activist Khanum (Sayani Gupta), a blind girl of a Pakistani Bangladeshi descent, whom she later falls in love with. As she embarks on a journey of sexual discovery, she figures out she is bisexual, as she feels attracted to men like Jared while also being with Khanum. She has sex with Jared and she doesn't tell Khanum. Laila's mother, believing the two are like best friends and oblivious to the fact that Khanum is her daughter's lover, invites her to Delhi to spend the winter break with the family. It is during that time that Laila finds the courage to tell her mother about her sexuality and her relationship with Khanum, which her mother initially disapproves. She also tells Khanum that she had sex with Jared and asks her to forgive her. Khanum thinks that she was being used by Laila and leaves her.

After a short while Laila's mother falls sick and she learns that her mother had fourth stage colon cancer which has fallen into relapse after previous treatments. Later Laila and her mother patch up and come to terms with each other. After her mother dies Laila plays a recorded speech at her mother's funeral telling how much she loved her and how she was the only one who ever understood her.

The story ends with Laila going on a date, with herself, signifying that she now has taken control of her life and doesn't need anyone else to love and care for her. The movie revolves around very delicate aspects of this modern life and teaching society how its better to adhere and accept the changing rituals.[9][11]



No. Title Lyrics Singer(s) Length
1. "Dusokute" Prasoon Joshi Joi Barua 3:05
2. "Foreign Balamwa" Prasoon Joshi Sonu Kakkar 2:28
3. "Choone Chali Aasman" Prasoon Joshi Rachel Varghese 3:05
4. "I Need a Man"   Vivienne Pocha 2:45



Margarita with a Straw was praised by critics. Subhash K. Jha of gave the movie 5 out of 5 stars and wrote "Sip and savour the delicate tastes of life in Margarita With a Straw. This is a moving heartwarming lyrical and yummy tale of a girl so sassy, she defines the eternal quest to seize the day."[16]

Box office

Margarita with a Straw collected a total of 74 million during its theatrical run.[3]


The film won the NETPAC award World or International Asian Film Premiere at 2014 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). It was the only Indian film to win an award at TIFF that year.

Kalki Koechlin won The Best Actress award at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival held in Estonia in 2014.[17][18] The film won the Audience Award and the Youth Jury Award at Vesoul Film Festival in France in 2015.[19] It won the Asian Film Awards for the Best Composer Award 2015.[20][21]

National Film Awards


  1. ^ "A CONVERSATION WITH SHONALI BOSE". Film Independent. 
  2. ^ "Kalki in MARGARITA, WITH A STRAW; plays character with cerebral palsy". 
  3. ^ a b "Margarita with a Straw". Box Office India. Retrieved 28 July 2017. 
  4. ^ "Kalki plays a disabled girl in Margarita, With a Straw". BLOCKBUSTER. 
  5. ^ "choone-chali". 
  6. ^ "Shonali Bose focuses lens on taboo subject - again". ZEE News. 
  7. ^ "WORK-IN-PROGRESS LAB". Film Bazaar. 
  8. ^ "NFDC Film Bazaar WIP Lab 2013: Margarita, With A Straw by Shonali Bose". Dear Cinema. 
  9. ^ a b "Kalki's Margarita With a Straw at TIFF". FirstPost. 
  10. ^ "TIFF Adds 'Clouds of Sils Maria' and 'Two Days, One Night,' Reveals 5 More Lineups". Indiewire. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  11. ^ a b "Margarita, with a Straw". TIFF. Archived from the original on 30 August 2014. Retrieved 2014-09-04. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Margarita, with a Straw". Retrieved 2014-09-04. 
  14. ^ Maulin Parmar (17 April 2015). "Margarita, with a Straw (2014)". IMDb. 
  15. ^ IMDB - Music Department, Margarita With A Straw
  16. ^ Subhash K. Jha. "Margarita With A Straw: Movie Review". SKJ Bollywood News. Retrieved 1 May 2015. 
  17. ^
  18. ^ "Kalki Koechlin Bags The Best Actress Award At The Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival". 
  19. ^ "Kalki Koechlin's film Margarita With A Straw wins two awards at the Vesoul Film Festival". The Times of India. 
  20. ^ "Kalki Koechlin's 'Margarita With A Straw' wins at Asian Film Awards". Zee News. 
  21. ^ "Kalki Koechlin Starrer 'Margarita With A Straw' Becomes Only Indian Film to Win Asian Film Awards [PHOTOS+WINNERS' LIST]". International Business Times, India Edition. 26 March 2015. 

External links

  • Margarita with a Straw on IMDb
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