For this top list we’ve compiled 12 must-have Lego sets from movie franchises. Lego calls these sets “themed,” although the term can also refer to sets such as Bionicles, Lego Castle, Lego City, etc. For this list we’re focusing only on movie-themed sets that were licensed by Lego. We’ve also limited the list to sets that are mass produced by Lego, not custom built sets or concept sets by Lego designers. Finally, we’re only grabbing one set from each movie franchise. This is a heads up for those of you wondering why there is only one Star Wars set listed (you’ll have to scroll down the list to see which set we picked out of so many choices). Truth is, it wouldn’t really be fair to other movie franchises if we decided to list more than one must-have Star Wars set. Finally, the sets below are listed in no particular order. If you’ve got a Lego set that you feel should have been included, please let us know in the comments below.
1. Back to the Future: The Delorean Time Machine (#21103)
This small brick set from Lego is not a huge challenge by any means, but what other vehicle can epitomize the concept of time travel using crude, 20th century technology better than the Delorean Time Machine from Back to the Future. The 401-piece set includes 2 minifigures: Marty McFly and Doc Brown, and was selected specifically by LEGO CUUSOO members for mass production. The Delorean Time Machine measures 5” (15cm) long and sells for $34.99.
2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtle Lair Attack (#79103)
Lego’s Turtle Lair Attack from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise is a pretty dynamic set for $49.99. In the box you get 5 minifigures: Leonardo, Raphael, Master Splinter, Dark Ninja and a Foot Soldier to put together with the 488 included pieces. Among the features are a skateboard ramp, rotating training dummy, opening manhole cover, exploding wall, secret sewer entrance into dojo, tree and weapons rack, and turtle catapult. There are also 10 weapons included to complete the ninja turtle playroom. The set was released in 2013 and is still available at Lego.com and other retailers.
3. Indiana Jones: Temple of Crystal Skull (#7627)
Temple of the Crystal Skull from the Indiana Jones theme is a 929-piece set with 10 minifigures that’s a great addition to anyone’s Lego collection. Released in 2008 (the same year the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull hit theaters), the set features moving staircases, hidden rooms, flying objects, and vehicle with caterpillar track. The base of the Lego set measures 22.7” (57.6cm) by 15.1” (9.6 cm) and upon completion weighs 4.36 lbs. Temple of the Crystal Skull carried a list price of $79.99 but is no longer in production.
4. Star Wars: Death Star (#10188)
There may not be a Lego collector out there who wouldn’t want the Death Star. The massive 3,803-piece set features all kinds of details from the Star Wars films, including the Superlaser control room, TIE Advanced hangar bay, droid maintenance room, detention block, and trash compactor. But what’s also desirable about Lego’s Death Star are the 24 minifigures. We won’t list them all here, but the figures exclusive to this set include Luke Skywalker (in Stormtrooper outfit), Han Solo (in Stormtrooper outfit), Assassin Droid, Interrogation Droid, Death Star Droid and 2 Death Star Troopers. We’d also be remised if we didn’t mention the rare Dianoga trash compactor monster that’s also included. At a whopping $399, this is one Lego set you may have to save up for, but money well-spent considering the enjoyment time putting it all together.
5. Lord of the Rings: Tower of Orthanc (#10237)
The Tower of Orthanc is a must-have for anyone who enjoys detailed Lego sets. It’s also a must-have for Lord of the Rings fans. The set features 6 floors that have functions such as a folding staircase, light brick palantir (replicating the magical artifact from the Tolkien books), opening entrance doors, and a trap door. Also included are the minifigures Saruman with kirtle outfit, Grima Wormtongue, Gandalf the Grey, Uruk-hai, and the Orc Pitmaster (for a total of five), along with a buildable Great Eagle that Gandalf can ride. The set measures over 28″ (73cm) high and 8″ (21cm) wide. Lego currently limits this set to 2 per customers, indicating a relatively limited production.
6. The Batmobile: Ultimate Collectors’ Edition (#7784)
Batman’s Arkham Asylum was a serious consideration for this spot, but even with less pieces we had to go with The Batmobile: Ultimate Collectors’ Edition. This licensed-set sold for about $70 when it was released in 2006. Now, you can find the edition for between $300 and $400 on Amazon. The set comes with 1,045 pieces and measures 18.9” (48cm) long when built. The only downside of the Batmobile: Ultimate Collectors’ Edition is that it doesn’t come with any minifigures.
7. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Black Pearl (#4184)
The Black Pearl from the Pirates of the Caribbean films is a “retired” product, as Lego calls any sets no longer in production. But still, it remains one of the must-have movie franchise Lego sets. Jack Sparrow is among the six included minifigures, along with Will Turner, Joshamee Gibbs, Davy Jones, Maccus and Bootstrap Bill with assorted weapons. The retail price of The Black Pearl was a modest $99 (packing 804 pieces), but now you might be able to grab one for twice that amount new in the box on Amazon or eBay.
8. Harry Potter: Hogwart’s Castle (#4842)
Another retired Lego product that’s still highly desired is Hogwart’s Castle from the Harry Potter film franchise. The set comes with 1,290 pieces and 11 minifigures including Harry Potter and Hermione Granger, as well as 9 minifigures exclusive to this set. The exclusive minifigures include Lord Voldemort, Professor Dumbledore, Professor Snape, Professor McGonagall, Professor Flitwick, Argus Filch and his cat, Mrs. Norris, and 2 Dementors.
9. The Simpsons House (#71006)
What would your Lego collection be without The Simpsons? The newly-released, 2,523-piece set from Lego is a must-have for anyone who loves the TV show or just has an appreciation for well-designed minifigures. Minifigures have come a long way since the early days, and you can see how well designed and detailed they can be in the included Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie, and Ned Flanders with cooking apron minifigures. The Simpsons House
(#71006) carries an MSRP of $199.
10. Iron Man: Malibu Mansion Attack (#76007)
This is a relatively small Lego set with just 364 pieces, but those pieces construct both the Mandarin’s helicopter and Tony Stark command center. There are also 5 really cool minifigures with the set, including Tony Stark, Mark 42 Armor, Pepper Potts, the Mandarin, and an Extremis soldier. Iron Man: Malibu Mansion Attack carries a list price of $39.99.
11. Prince of Persia: Battle of Alamut (#7573)
Prince of Persia started as a video game, then became a movie, then became a Lego themed series. There were several cool Prince of Persia Lego sets released at the time of the movie, like The Ostrich Race and The Fight for the Dagger, but Battle of Alamut was the most challenging with 821 pieces. The set, currently out of production, came with seven minifigures including Dastan – Scabbard, Nizam, Seso, Gool – Scimitar Hassansin, Tamah – Razor Glove Hassansin, and two Alamut guards. Battle of Alamut measures 18.9” (48cm) x 14.9” (37.8cm) when complete, and retailed for $79.99 in the US when released in 2010.
12. Ghostbusters (#21108)
This new upcoming set from Lego is sure to be a hit, with its four ghost-busting minifigures (Dr. Peter Venkman, Dr. Raymond Stantz, Dr. Egon Spengler, and Winston Zeddemore), and detailed rendering of the famous 1959 Cadillac Ambulance. We’re not sure exactly how many pieces the set will contain, but we do know it will retail for $49.99 when it hits shelves sometime this year. Might we have minifigures of Sigourney Weaver’s character Dana Barrett, and Rick Moranis’ character Louis Tully (aka the “keymaster”), please?
Jeff Chabot has a background in web development and design, as well as working in broadcast television as a studio engineer, lighting director and editor. He frequently writes about technology, broadcasting, digital entertainment, and the internet.