The redeeming value of the 1st movie was that it was really quite wonderfully tongue-in-cheek thanks to Verhoeven's decision to knowingly treat it as gonzo MI propaganda piece. Roughnecks went the Tour of Duty approach to explore through the eyes of an embedded propaganda officer concepts of duty, honour, heroism, sacrifice, and fellowship under fire, both as preached by those in charge and as experienced in the field.
ST:I has precious little of either take, apart from the "Acceptible losses? Fuck Yeah!" final scene with Johnny, Carmen, and Carl that is pretty blatantly cribbed from the 1st movie but filled with the almost Poe-faced earnestness that suffuses this whole endeavour. Dropping Johnny into the action in the final reel as a Batman Ex Machina after using the rest of the cast as ablative armour for Carmen was a damn cheat, turning what should have been a "Whoa, cool!" moment of survival against the queen into a facepalmingly trite exercise in "Meh, whatever" script immunity. If they'd actually had the courage to maim Johnny onscreen insteed of having Nick Fury'ed him beforehand I would have been impressed.
As it is, the only character I found myself liking was Trig. While she was more or less as stock standard as the other characters, that allowed the actual little bit of depth she was afforded to really stand out. The coda to her death with Bugspray continuing the count before he too is overwhelmed was, I think, one of the more -- indeed, few -- satisfying character moments of the film.