At least STAR WARS has that Title Card in the very beginning of all the movies that pronounces itself a fairy tale. Making its case almost water-tight! Which all but defangs - and declaws - any and all criticism, because "Anything Goes" in the land of make-believe. Whereas STAR TREK has this tradition of being so concerned with credibility - particularly with the various television series. But it is something, how Nicholas Meyers lifted quotes and whole pages right out of Mobey Dick - so nakedly, I might add - and to such adulation. Yet, the adulation of his admirers is, perhaps, no less capricious than the disparagement of his detractors in the light of WRATH of KHAN's influence and success - despite being possessed of a plethora of shortcomings ...
As noted again and again, the story--which clearly worked to the base and beyond--restored the drama and adventure to ST that was utterly lost in the wandering, pretentious TMP.
Unlike the common, would-be audience pleasing "flick," TWOK had a monumental task to please two generations of TOS fans--and
secure the interest of the general audience. In successfully doing both, ST exists today. There's no way to overestimate its importance to the franchise, as it was balancing on a crumbling cliff after 1979's inflated exercise in pseudo philosophical fantasy.
If TWOK was just another stab at big screen ST with no heart, purpose and feel for its source material, there would be no TSFS - the unfortunate JJ films.