Yes, the whole "Roddenberry's vision" thing comes up again. It usually only comes around when people are trying to find a way to support keeping Trek stagnant in the 1960's, and that's too bad. As for the cast of the movie having something to do, well, I think Jill Pantozzi
at her nerdybird blog said it best:
Jill Pantozzi wrote:
The crew of the Enterprise haven't evolved much since we last saw them. They've been going on missions but Kirk is still Kirk, and Spock is still Spock. And that's pretty much it because this is the Kirk and Spock show. Seriously. I actually felt sorry for the rest of the cast because no one else had a chance to shine or even really act together as a crew. Uhura got to speak Klingon, Sulu got to sit in the captain's chair and sound badass for about 10 seconds, Scotty shut down an enemy ship and opened an air lock, Bones got to say funny things, and Chekov...ran around a lot. What a waste of a tremendous group of actors. I won't go into Dr. Carol Marcus all that much but suffice to say, her purpose in the film was minimal and they made her stand around in underwear for absolutely no reason. We didn't even see an actual display of the intelligence she was touted to have.