The movie "Fletch", staring Chevy Chase, is a movie about an investigating reporter for a Los Angeles newspaper, Erwin Fletcher "Fletch", loitering around a beach in attempt to pass as a beach junkie with the intention of getting to the bottom of the drug trade and attempting to figure out who is behind the whole thing. While "working" the beaches, Fletch runs into a businessman who asks him to murder him so his wife will inherit the life insurance policy. Fletch, being the investigative reporter senses something fishy and does what he does best, investigates the situation. Along the way, Fletch commits many illegal acts and crimes in attempt to get to the bottom of the situation. Although his intentions are good, Fletch gets into a lot of trouble.
The movie begins with Fletch in the guise of a aimless druggie, hanging out on the beach. Fletch is working on a story for his newspaper about the illegal drug traffic on the beach. Unexpectedly, Fletch is approached by a well-dressed, clearly wealthy man: airline executive Alan Stanwyk. The man offers Fletch $1,000 just to go to his house and listen to a offer. He assures Fletch that his proposal is not of a sexual nature.
After Fletch and Stanwyk drive to Stanwyk's mansion, they talk in Stanwyk's study. Stanwyk offers Fletch $50,000 in cash: ostensibly to kill him so Stanwyk can avoid a painful cancer death and so Stanwyk's wife Gail can collect insurance. Stanwyk tells Fletch that he will leave a gun in the desk drawer, and the money in the open safe. All Fletch needs to do is come by at the appointed time a few days hence, shoot Stanwyk dead, take the money, and use pre-arranged airline tickets to start a new life abroad. Fletch does not know it at the time, but Stanwyk, the film's primary villain, is actually planning to kill Fletch.
Fletch realizes that he has stumbled upon a potentially great investigative news story. Why would a wealthy man who appears to be in excellent health hire a stranger to kill him?...