Ghost Stories became the talk of the town right after its release on New Year's Eve. While it scared some twitter users to rob them of their sleep, others found it too bland to continue watching. One thing common between most were questions. The horror anthology takes a more psychological approach than usual ghosts lurking in the background. During an interview with Indianexpress Anurag Kashyap who directed the Sobhita Dhulipala segment revealed, "Each short film in the anthology gives an idea of how the director thinks. You will figure out how they look at life from their films."
So the film's tagline, 'your fears will find you' indicates towards the common incidents that could turn into your worst nightmares and haunt you for the rest of your life. To explain the endings we will have to look at all segments separately, spoilers ahead, for those who do not wish to know about the stories. The four short stories are each directed by Zoya Akhtar, Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee, and Karan Johar.
Janhvi Kapoor is seen as a nurse who is taking care of an old lady, only to find out she has been taking care of a ghost. Before finding out, Janhvi does have a meaningful conversation with the old lady. She reminds her, if she has an able body and mind she does not have to keep waiting around for people, 'Jaan hai tho jahan hai'. The two had one thing in common, while Janhvi's character Simran kept waiting for her married boyfriend to pay attention to her, the old lady kept waiting for the son to come home and meet her. Waiting all alone she succumbs to her ill-health and passes away, that's when Simran decides, she is done waiting around.
Sobhita Dhulipala plays the role of a woman who is trying to conceive a child, after suffering from a miscarriage in the past. This one is a bit trippy, in story and in visuals. Sobhita's character, when young was yelled at by her mother for destroying bird's eggs. 'If you touch a bird's egg, the bird destroys it' despite knowing at a young age Sobhita had made the mistake of touching an egg and now believes that's why she is losing her unborn children.
On the other hand, she has a nephew who is obsessed with her. Growing up without a mother can be hard and he has taken to his Masi a lot after his mother's passing. The emotional dependency increases to a point that he can't bear for her to have children of her own. While Sonhita loses her grip on reality due to losing her child, her nephew is happy now thinking he will always get to be by his masi's side.
The director has a very strong opinion on the country's political stance. This short story is about political and societal influence one can exercise on the vulnerable people of our society.
When in an unknown town, our lead character finds out people of two district (who hate each other) have been eating each other. Their hatred has driven them mad and turned them into animals, while the lead still believes he can save the two children in his care, he tries to get help. Eventually, one child gets killed and the other gets turned into an animal himself. The weak and the vulnerable have two choices, either you become the victim of the system or you join the system. And at the end of the film, even though the lead is unaware he too, to save himself ends up joining the system.
The last segment of the film is the simplest one and does actually have ghosts in it. Mrunal Thakur seen as Ira finds a match through an arranged marriage, the traditional way. As soon as she gets married she finds out everyone in the family talks about their dead grandmother as though she is alive.
Unnatural that the behaviour is, instead of running the other way she tries to solve the problem, makes changes, questions the granny's existence and as to answer her request the family kills her off on the grandmother's order.
Ira does meet the granny on the other side and all the other people who also had questioned granny's existence.
With all the heart that was put into the stories a bit of more craft would have made them much more. It could have been a series of short films that touched each aspect of life and real fears that one faces almost every day. Ghost Stories is now available on Netflix's streaming platform to view.