Beware of Mr. Baker

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Spend some time with rock ‘n’ roll monster Ginger Baker, Cream’s legendary scarlet-maned, hell-raising drummer. This no-holds-barred, sad, and often hilarious portrait of the man referred to as rock’s first great drummer (and perhaps still its best) lets him tell his own story, intercut with footage of his continent-hopping life, from London to L.A., Nigeria, Italy, South Africa, and (way, way) beyond.  Baker may have broken the mold musically, but his violent, dyspeptic mood swings, fueled by a multi-decade heroin addiction, went a long way to making him persona non grata even among the music greats who still revere his work. Eric Clapton, Johnny Rotten, Charlie Watts, and Lars Ulrich, Baker’s four wives, and three grown children all have something to say about him: “He’s a force of nature,” “he’s the greatest drummer any of us had ever heard,” “he’s mad,” and “he’s fairly consistently horrible” are just a few of them. Beware of Mr. Baker indeed … (Dir. by Ray Bulger, 2012, 100 mins., Not Rated, Snag Films) HD Digital