I just watch it as Star Trek: The Chill-Out Picture
. Just let it wash over and enjoy the ride rather than get hung up on plot or action. I saw an interview once with Douglas Trumbull, who worked on TMP visual fx, who said that after working on the stargate sequence in 2001
his primary interest became first-person POV cinema, which eventually led to Brainstorm
and his simulator ride stuff. Seems the Vger scenes in TMP were part of that journey for him.