Is All Fair in Fun and Games? Ruthless: Monopoly’s Secret History

February 22, 2023

Ruthless: Monopoly’s Secret History premiered on American Experience on PBS stations on Tuesday, February 20 at 10 p.m. Stream full episode.

Games have rules, but who hasn’t yelled, “that’s not fair!” when we took a turn for the worse? For generations, Monopoly has been America’s favorite board game, a love letter to unbridled capitalism and — for better or worse — the impulses that make our free-market society tick. But behind the myth of the game’s creation is an untold tale of theft, obsession and corporate double-dealing. Not all is fair in fun and games. Part detective story, part sharp social commentary and part pop-culture celebration, the film American Experience: Ruthless: Monopoly’s Secret History presents the fascinating true story of the game and those who created it, including Lizzie Magie. Directed by Stephen Ives (Constitution USA; Amato: A Love Affair With Opera).

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