Movie Review: Fletch (1985)

by StevenHelmer

A review of the 1985 comedy mystery starring Chevy Chase and Joe Don Baker.

Synopsis: An investigative reporter is offered a large sum of money to kill a cancerous millionaire but, instead, begins to investigate his would-be client's motivations. As he continues his efforts, he uncovers drug smuggling, crooked cops and bigamy while, at the same time, putting his own life in danger.

Who's In It?


My yard work plans were ruined by cool temps and rain today and, since I need to be home for my sick daughter (flu), I decided to just have a lazy Sunday and watch some movies. I've seen the film "Fletch" before. But, I couldn't remember much about it and, because of that, decided to watch it again. Overall, I was happy with this choice.

As far as comedies go, this one does honestly lack something, at least in my opinion. I like Chevy Chase. But, a lot of his jokes seem to be used in all of his movies. Though, admittedly, I did like how he continued to torment a rude millionaire (William Traylor) throughout the film, just because he deserved it.

What I like about this film is the mystery. The millionaire that hires him (Matheson) is obviously up to something from the start. But, while he is definitely lying about why he is hiring Fletch (Chase), his motives aren't clear from the beginning. Plus, since Fletch is supposed to be investigating drug trade on the beach, it's not clear whether the millionaire is related to that or if it's a completely different investigation.

The fact he was constantly in danger from a corrupt police chief (Baker) also kept things interesting, especially since the chief was potentially willing to commit murder if needed. That threat made me wonder if Fletch would end up in jail or a body bag.

Adding to this was the way Fletch would find clues but often wouldn't give any hint about what they meant. This definitely added to the entertainment value of the film, especially since, again, there were potentially two different investigations and the clues could have been related to either one of them.

Final Opinion

As I said, this movie wasn't quite as funny as I was hoping it would be. But, the film does offer quite a decent mystery and, if you haven't seen it, is worth watching as a result.

My Grade: B

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Updated: 03/13/2016, StevenHelmer
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DerdriuMarriner on 03/24/2022

StevenHelmer, Thank you for product lines, pretty pictures and practical information.
The library system here has two films entitled Fletch among its Blu-ray and DVD collections! The one I intend to look into is the one in your review.

Would the film have warranted an A rating if everything stayed the same but they gave Chevy Chase new jokes?

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