Ok, so help me out here. For those of you who loved it, where did it hook you? Thinking back, I was engaged from the get go. The Niribu scene with The Enterprise rising out of the ocean was frelling awesome. Then we went through to Kirk's demotion - great. Then IIRC the bar scene... okay ... then, the scene with Kirk and Spock and the quibbling over how to address Kirk (before the big meeting and Harrison's assault). I reckon it's about there that I started to drift out. There was a bit of a lag, but I thought they were taking the foot off the pedal briefly before we got to the real meat of the story. Alas, it never got there for me.
That's interesting, as I had more or less the same experience. I loved the first 15 minutes with the mission on Nibiru, the volcano, the Enterprise
rising out of the water, then BOOM!!! the title card! Brilliant stuff there!
Most of what came after that was fine with me. I didn't buy that Kirk was being demoted from Captain of the ship to First Officer back to Captain in what seemed like five minutes, but I could live with that. Harrison beaming from Earth to frickin' Kronos was harder to swallow, but I thought, come on, don't get hung up on such technical shit. Seeing the uber-secret Vengeance
from the trailer in Marcus' office? Okay, doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but I can swallow that. The Enterprise
zapping from one part of the galaxy to another? Well, okay, this new universe seems to be pretty small, I thought. Spock and Uhura – two high-ranking, supposedly professional officers of the Federation flagship – quarreling like teenagers on their most important mission yet in front of their captain? I'm beginning to wonder if this is the kind of Star Trek
I really want to see. If these are really the characters I love and care about.
And then the pivotal moment; at least for me: Harrison reveals himself to be Khan. I remember thinking, that I have no problem whatsoever with them reinterpreting Khan. But at the same time I felt, that this had no punch, no gravitas, no meaning. At all. I kept asking myself, why it had to be
Khan. I kept wondering if people in the audience weren't asking themselves right now, what the significance of his backstory – being a genetically engineered man from 300 years ago – was.
This was the moment when I seemed to give up on the movie. The rest – the whole "homage" to TWOK and the horrible KHAAAAAAN!!!11!!1
– felt just like the confirmation of what I had already formed in my mind at that time: I wasn't going to like this movie.