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Best Horror Movies: Which Does Each US State Love Most?

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We love Halloween. It’s a great time to get your popcorn, turn out the lights, and cue up your favorite scary movie. But there’s always the question of what that scary movie should be. Well, maybe it would help to know which movie people in your area most love.

Using a combination of information from Rotten Tomatoes and Google Trends, we partnered with Mindnet Analytics to analyze how interest in horror movies varied by people in each state and the District of Columbia (DC).

Best Horror Movies: Interesting Findings

  • The Devil’s Backbone is the horror movie most places are obsessed with, appearing as the most loved in DC, Michigan, New Jersey, and Texas. Is it the best horror movie? You’ll have to watch and decide for yourself!
  • Bakjwi appears twice on our list, along with Freaks.
  • Some horror movie interests lie in the location they were shot or set in. For example, The Shining in Colorado.
  • Oregon is the most interested in horror movies, followed by Alaska, Washington DC, Utah, and Wyoming.
  • Southeastern states seem to have the least interest in scary movies. Florida is the least interested, followed by Georgia, the Carolinas, and Mississippi.

Best Horror Movies by State

StateMovie Most Obsessed with
AlabamaHarpoon
AlaskaGet Out
ArizonaNight of the Comet
ArkansasHost
CaliforniaTheater of Blood
ColoradoThe Shining
ConnecticutThe Wicker Man
DelawareRepulsion
District of ColumbiaThe Devil’s Backbone
Florida1408
GeorgiaJacob’s Ladder
HawaiiCargo
IdahoFrankenstein
IllinoisI Walked With a Zombie
IndianaThe Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
IowaPeeping Tom
KansasTremors
KentuckyHalloween
LouisianaDr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
MaineThe Lighthouse
MarylandFreaks
MassachusettsJaws
MichiganThe Devil’s Backbone
MinnesotaPsycho
MississippiThe Loved Ones
MissouriThe Bride of Frankenstein
MontanaThe Babadook
NebraskaKing Kong
NevadaFreaks
New HampshireEraserhead
New JerseyThe Devil’s Backbone
New MexicoAlien
New YorkBakjwi
North CarolinaIt
North Dakota10 Cloverfield Lane
OhioTucker and Dale vs. Evil
OklahomaZombieland
OregonHost
PennsylvaniaThe Abominable Dr. Phibes
Rhode IslandThe Invisible Man
South CarolinaAn American Werewolf in London
South DakotaLa Llorona
TennesseeIsland of Lost Souls
TexasThe Devil’s Backbone
UtahThe Silence of the Lambs
VermontBakjwi
VirginiaDead Ringers
WashingtonDon’t Look Now
West VirginiaThe Night of the Hunter
WisconsinThe Love Witch
WyomingA Quiet Place

A Word on Methodology

First, we used the list of the top 200 best horror movies from Rotten Tomatoes to determine a set of candidate movies that each state might be most obsessed with.

The data used to determine which movie each state is most obsessed with came from Google Trends state-wise search frequencies. For example, if you look at the relative search frequency for “The Shining” across states you see that people in Colorado have searched more for this movie than any other state.

This movie is therefore the movie that according to Google Trends data we deemed Colorado was most “obsessed” with in 2020. It is not necessarily the movie that they searched for more than all other movies, rather it is the movie that they searched for more than other states. The same procedure and logic applies to all other movie-state matches in our results.

In order to avoid counting searches for things that share the name of a movie such as “Cargo” we used the Google Trends search filter category 34 to return only counts of searches for movies. We only counted search frequencies from October 1st, 2019 through October 1st, 2020.

By William Parker

William Parker covers cord cutting for KTCB. He's an avid cord cutter, uses Netflix and Disney+ incessantly, and loves to tell everyone about it. Contact him at [email protected]

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