I also had the feeling that the release of First Contact was the climax of Star Trek. And First Contact celebrated that with fun, combining references to the most popular/memorable items of the TV shows, getting back to the central element of the Trek/Federation mythology, and had an entirely different, fresh style. And I remember articles about it praising the hell out of it, calling the space battle the best one on the big screen since Return of the Jedi. It did what Abrams & Co always talked about with ease. First Contact is the film I watch with people to introduce them to Trek.
Someone needs to go back in time and seed the idea of an Avengers style movie series. A TNG film, a DS9 film, a VOY film, and then a film that combines all of that in an epic story.