It’s been 30 years since Jurassic Park arrived in cinemas and it changed movies forever. It also ignited a new interest in dinosaurs and the eras in which these prehistoric beasts ruled the Earth. The interest in dinosaurs was so strong, it inspired the LEGO® theme called LEGO Dino, which introduced a number of LEGO dinosaur figures. Many of those have continued to be used in the LEGO Jurassic World sets, which have now evolved into the LEGO Jurassic Park theme. One of the sets released earlier this year celebrates an iconic moment from Spielberg’s 1993 masterpiece and it’s also a set full of firsts. Welcome to my review of the Jurassic Park set – Brachiosaurus Discovery.
Set Name: Brachiosaurus Discovery | Set Number: 76960 | Pieces: 512 | Theme: Jurassic Park
RRP: £74.99/$79.99/84.99€ | Number of Bags: Bags x 4 + loose elements | Instructions: Paper booklets x 1 + Builder App | Stickers: Sheet x 1 | Minifigures: Dr Alan Grant, Dr Ellie Sattler, John Hammon + Brachiosaurus
Availability: LEGO Stores, LEGO Online & General Retail
I remember fondly, sitting in the cinema 30 years ago to watch Jurassic Park and even now John Williams’ score gives me chills and the practical effects still hold up. As I rewatched the film while building this set, I found myself mouthing iconic lines and gripped to the screen as a T. rex chows down on a 4×4, even though I’d seen it many times before. So it’s safe to say I love the Jurassic Park films and when I saw that there was finally going to be a wave of sets inspired by the original film, I was excited to check them out. The most interesting of those sets is Brachiosaurus Discovery, as mentioned it’s full of firsts including a new dinosaur figure, the first official LEGO take on a particular Jurassic Park vehicle and paper bag packaging.
The Jurassic World/Park sets have given us a number of great LEGO dinosaur figures. Many of them were first created for the 2012 LEGO Dino theme and even variations such as the Indominus rex have used slightly tweaked moulds of other species. This set features a brand new dinosaur species and it just so happens to also be one of the biggest dinosaurs to roam the Earth millions of years ago. The Brachiosaurus is a huge dinosaur and it requires a set of unique pieces to create it. These are all supplied in the new paper bags. The dinosaur is made up of five parts – the head, jaw, neck, tail and body. Unlike most of the other LEGO dinosaur figures, the Brachi’s body is a complete piece, with the limbs unable to be moved. You can move the neck, head and open its mouth. Obviously, the scale of the Brachi isn’t comparable to other species or elements of the set. But it’s still a hefty LEGO creature.
LEGO fans have been keen to see some of the vehicles from Jurassic Park get recreated in LEGO form and that wish was granted with last year’s Jurassic Park diorama. This set adds the Jeep Wrangler, which is used by quite a few different characters during the film. It’s obviously not as colourful as the JP-branded Ford Explorer but you can instantly tell what it’s meant to be, even without any Jeep branding. Much of the detail on the Wrangler is added with stickers. It can also hold four minifigures, making the lack of a certain handsome mathematician even more annoying. The Jeep does looks great against the Ford Explorer (which is not included in this set).
As cool as the Jeep and dinosaur are, it doesn’t make for an exciting playset, so they are joined by a tree. Technically, this doesn’t play a part in the particular scene which has inspired this set. Instead, the tree is connected to a moment later in the film when Dr Grant and Hammond’s grandkids are up a tree and end up feeding one of the Brachiosaurus. The LEGO version even includes a platform to stand a minifigure one. It might be a bit random when combined with the other elements in this set but I do like a good old LEGO tree and this one looks great thanks to all the foliage. It can be a little tricky to place some of them.
The set features three main characters all of whom have appeared in other sets, but the ones included here are all unique. The tweaks to their designs are minimal such as John Hammond’s extra two pockets and Dr Grant’s wry grin. All three characters are great, although Ellie is depicted wearing shorts and her skin is printed onto a coloured surface, which has resulted in it getting washed out and is barely visible. Either dual moulded legs should have been used or printed detail needs to be improved. It’s a shame Dr Malcolm has been omitted as he plays a key role in the scene this set is based on.
I have a fondness for any sort of LEGO animal and my love of the Jurassic Park/World universe means I love the various dinosaurs and the Brachiosaurus is one of the most impressive yet. There’s no getting away from the fact this set has a high price point which may seem at odds with the content of the set. But the Brachiosaurus uses some pretty big pieces, which are, unfortunately, rather costly. I love the Jeep and in all honesty, the Jeep, the minifigures and the unique dinosaur figure make this a great set. It would have been near perfect if Dr Ian Malcolm was also included, especially due to his prominence in this scene. Most of all it’s nice to see more sets inspired by Jurassic Park. Hopefully, they will continue with sets inspired by the two Jurassic Park sequels.