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Review: 40478 Mini Disney Castle

Posted by CapnRex101, 17 Sep 2021 14:00

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40478 Mini Disney Castle celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of Walt Disney World. This splendid model features tremendous detail and accurate colours, matching 71040 Disney Castle. Various distinctive elements adorn this model, assuring appropriate splendour.

Furthermore, the construction methods appear incredibly intricate, enhancing this creation beyond those of comparable size and integrating unusual parts. An exclusive minifigure accompanies the model too, only increasing its appeal.

Minifigure

Numerous impressive Mickey Mouse minifigures are available, featuring diverse clothing and taking inspiration from various sources. This example somewhat resembles the minifigure from 71040 Disney Castle, featuring a similar jacket and shirt. However, the enormous bow tie is now red, which seems strange because Mickey generally sports a yellow tie at Disney World.

While the torso and decorated legs appear relatively consistent, the head is unique. The mould remains unchanged and looks splendid, although the eyebrows appear distinctive and compare favourably with the original character. Mickey’s eyes have also been updated, featuring enlarged pupils when compared with past minifigures.

The Completed Model

Cinderella’s magnificent castle has achieved extraordinary renown since 1971 and this design appears immediately recognisable. The dramatic towers and decorative finials look impressive, reaching 21cm in height. However, I think the beautiful colours are more important in achieving fantastic display value, with pearl gold and differing shades of blue complementing these white and light bluish grey walls.

The reverse seems bland by comparison, although this castle is completely enclosed which is excellent. Moreover, the proportions are reasonably accurate when compared with the original castle, while the black display base further improves its appearance. The contrast between the dark base and the vibrant building is exceptionally effective.

While its normal colour scheme has remained fairly consistent since 1971, Cinderella Castle is periodically decorated to celebrate certain occasions. That sometimes involves golden accents, although this concentration of pearl gold appears unusual. Nevertheless, I think the colours are attractive here, beginning across the bridge and continuing under the archway where the raised portcullis is visible.

Removing the upper sections of Cinderella’s Castle reveals superb detail concealed inside the central walkway. These colourful areas are inspired by mosaic murals which are situated within the original castle, including a tile that displays Cinderella’s elegant glass slippers. This element returns from 43192 Cinderella’s Royal Carriage.

The opposite side displays a tile which originally appeared in 71044 Disney Train and Station, portraying 71040 Disney Castle. That is certainly welcome, although including more authentic designs would have been great. However, the difficulty in accessing this limited space is more problematic because the upper section is not designed for easy removal.

Fortunately, the exterior displays even greater detail. Golden crowbars form columns flanking the entrance and binoculars appear on each tower, creating brilliant texture. The printed clock looks wonderful too, matching the depiction from 71040 Disney Castle and including an ornate balcony underneath. The angular roof above the clock also appears accurate.

Technic gears represent superb machicolations beneath the projecting sections of each tower, while the roofs include an interesting trans-opalescent blue shade. I have not encountered the colour before and the three elements present here are new in trans-opalescent blue. Moreover, the arrangement of separate towers corresponds with the source material.

While the reverse lacks the exceptional decoration across the front, the trans-opalescent brown windows appear perfect when compared with the original location. I love the alternating white and pearl gold highlights along the wall as well, especially with a narrow white band making excellent use of rocker bearings underneath. Additional detail above the windows would have been beneficial though.

Trans-clear 1×1 tiles form windows across the front. These are correctly positioned and I am particularly pleased with that situated in front of the angled roof slopes. The primary tower looks fantastic too, consisting almost entirely of pearl gold parts. The adjoining bartizan also appears accurate and I am impressed that the designer has captured such realistic detail at this scale.

Overall

Cinderella’s Castle has become an iconic representative of Walt Disney World, so 40478 Mini Disney Castle commemorates this fiftieth anniversary perfectly. Despite the modest scale, this model appears magnificent and features outstanding detail from the original castle, surpassing its larger counterpart in that regard.

Admittedly, the prevalence of pearl gold differs from the source material, but certainly improves the display value, while accessing the internal decoration should have been easier. Additionally, I think the price of £30.99 or $34.99 feels somewhat expensive, although the remarkable quality of this model cannot be overlooked and I am confident that it will prove successful.

This set was provided for review by The LEGO Group, but the review represents an expression of my own opinions.

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