The Trial of Old Drum Movie Review
This coming-of-age story follows just what we'd expect: a boy and his dog in 1950s middle America (and a true story, at that). Old Drum is the dog, and Bobby Edner is the kid (a kid who looks like that kid in all these movies). And of course, the dog's amazing: He even pulls him out of a lake after his raft falls apart and conks him unconscious. And when a pack of wild dogs attack, Drum single-handedly kills them all, taking serious wounds in the process. (He recovers, of course, to become the town hero -- those wild dogs are killing the local sheep!)
But before you know it, the hero dog is accused of killing sheep himself, finger pointing courtesy of Bobby's uncle, who's never liked Bobby and his dad (Ron Perlman), illogically blaming his sister's/Bobby's mom's burst appendix on her widower. The titular trial doesn't actually begin until 67 minutes into the 87-minute movie, with two "high powered" attorneys duking it out over Drum's guilt.
Gee, ya think they execute the dog? Derivative of Old Yeller, My Dog Skip, and a whole host of equally sappy pet flicks, The Trial of Old Drum is nonetheless watchable despite its familiarity. The story isn't wholly uplifting nor totally inaccessable, but it does have one thing going for it that's hard to resist: Puppies.