A lot of science-fiction and fantasy films, television shows and other creative mediums are hinged heavily upon action, a lot of these are very good but a lot are very bad. The above picture is obviously from the classic kick ass science fiction action movie Predator, which can easily fall into the category of a simple action flick. However, I've always thought the movie had some deeper themes, it's a film with fatalistic themes and calls into questions mans place not only in his own world, but existence in general.
On the opposite end of the spectrum you have science fiction and fantasy works (mostly sci-fi from my experience) that effectively tell there story with a minimal amount of action, works like 2001 and Solaris.
To what degree can stories in fantastic settings be effective with a minimal amount of action, or none at all? What is the perfect balance? These are questions I've asked myself when considering my own work. My work would fall into the sci-fi/fantasy category though I try not to limit myself, I just throw in whatever I think works. My work needs to have action, but I hate writing it...not because I find it outright boring but because I find it difficult to do without being cliche or utterly ridiculous. I suppose I want the action in my work to be meaningful, so I try to use it sparingly. Though to be honest I've found myself at times throwing in unnecessary action...mostly because I'm thinking about how to satisfy readers as opposed to myself. So, I suppose, what I'm trying to say is that I need to write for myself first and foremost...hopefully things will fall into place after that!