Greg Cox wrote:
It occurs to me that pretty much all of the TOS movies tried to do something special that made them more than just a typical TV episode brought to the screen:
TMP brought back the original crew and threatened Earth itself!
TWOK killed off Spock! And gave Kirk a son!
TSFS blew up the Enterprise! And brought Spock back to life!
TVH: The end of the trilogy! And a brand new Enterprise!
TFF: Er, did we mention that Spock has a brother?
TUC: The final voyage of the original crew--and a new era of peace with the Klingons.
To be fair, the TNG movies started out with the same approach:
GEN: Picard meets Kirk! The Enterprise is destroyed!
FC: Picard vs. Borg, the big rematch! Meet the Borg Queen! And, hey, First Contact with the Vulcans!
INS: Er, these aliens we've never heard about before are getting a raw deal from Starfleet, and they're really nice and peaceful and enlightened and all . . . .
See what I mean? Nothing that particularly cries out for exclamation points on that last one.
Later on, NEM was at least trying to think big: Picard's clone! Remans! Riker and Troi get married! Data dies . . . sorta.
come on, say what you will about TFF but it does have ambition and an attempt at epic scope.
"the Enterprise goes to find God," flawed as a premise though it may be, is not small-scale.
INS, on the other hand, doesn't even try, and may be the only film in the entire movie series not to.