Here’s every state’s favorite Spielberg movie. The other 49 haven’t heard of yours, Idaho

·2 min read

If Idaho ever hopes to sail away into the night with a hidden cargo of all the ways it’s embarrassed itself, here’s some advice.

To quote “Jaws”? “You’re gonna need a bigger boat.”

Self-humiliation? It’s what we do best. Proudly!

The latest example? A list of every state’s favorite Steven Spielberg movie.

GetCenturyLink, an online CenturyLink reseller, compiled this analysis, it says, because two “culture-defining” Spielberg movies are being released at IMAX: “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” (Aug. 12) and “Jaws” (Sept. 2).

Besides, this stuff is just fun. Spielberg has a bunch of super-famous, super-memorable films.

So what are the favorites based on Google searches?

“Saving Private Ryan” by a mile — the top movie in 19 states. Nine others went with “Schindler’s List.”

“E.T.” phoned home in seven states. Two absolute classics, “Jaws” and “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (solid pick, Utah), were tops in three each.

Idahoans love teasing Utah. Unfortunately, Utahns are “Lost” in a good way this time. Utah “might love Steven Spielberg more than any other state does,” according to the study, “with five movies tied for the most Googled Spielberg film there. ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ ultimately won by a slim margin.”

As for Idaho? Utah’s pressing us slowly into that “Raiders” airplane propeller. We’re all alone here. The nationwide joke.

As “Always.”

A graphic of every state’s most Googled Steven Spielberg movie.
A graphic of every state’s most Googled Steven Spielberg movie.

Idaho’s favorite Spielberg movie, unlike any other state (plus Washington D.C.), was a movie we’d forgotten existed. “Always” is a 1989 “romantic fantasy drama film,” according to Wikipedia.

Do I even know this flick? I asked my wife if she did.

“No,” she replied quizzically, before typing on her laptop. “Wait, wait, wait, I think I HAVE seen it. It’s with John Goodman, right? It’s very good. It’s sad.”

What’s sad is Idaho’s taste in movies. A romanti-fanta-drama-thingy starring Roseanne’s husband? And Richard Dreyfuss?

Then again, let’s not get too worked up. This data-driven Spielberg “study” used methodology based on Google Trends.

The fact that Nebraska is the only state that chose “Lincoln” — and Lincoln happens to be the freakin’ state capital — seems suspect.

Is there an Always, Idaho? Maybe up north?

Admitting, finally, that I’d never even heard of Idaho’s favorite movie, I reasoned with my wife: “It’s not the years, honey, it’s the mileage.”

(Thanks, Indiana Jones.)

By the way? Indiana chose “Saving Private Ryan.”