Well, The Phantom Menace is my least favorite of the six movies, but I don't think it was altogether bad certainly. Overall I think of it as a "good" movie in a "great" series, if that makes sense.
Qui-gon's charachter added a lot to the movie, and the movie also sported Ewan McGregor's first performance as Obi Wan, which has always been (to my thinking) very appropriate and well-done. Yoda, while looking a bit weird and inconsistant with other movies, was overall well done, as was Mace Windu's cryptic role.
Anakin is a mixed bag really. The kid seems overenthusiastic, but on the other hand he probably would be in these situations. I don't think the little actor was bad for the part at all, as he does pretty good with the bulk of what the part has him do and pretty well in his one threatening moment (his little "I'm a person" speech). However his lines were often a bit cheesy, with things like the reference, "let's try spinning, that's a good trick!" (although it gives me this great image in ANH of Vader sitting in his cockpit grumbling, "Let's not try spinning, that's a crappy trick")
Yes, JarJar is the real Menace of the movie, but there's good stuff to be had if you can look past him. Not that the other gungans really helped that much either, but still...
Palpatine was awesome in this movie, as well. Very slimy, but not overdone at all. I have to cringe a bit when he slaps Ani on the back and says "We'll watch your career with great interest" and a smirk on his face!
Padme wasn't bad either, and she comes off a good mixture of angry but not 100% confident of her abilities.
The politics were a bit stodgy and tended to make the entire plotline of Naboo vs. the Trade Federation a little more boring than it should've been, but the politics have their good moments too, especially where Palpatine is concerned. The more you know about him when you watch this movie, the more you shake your head as he subtlely uses everyone and everything at his disposal.
So it's not really a bad movie, just nothing to get as worked up about as the others to me. But it certainly has it's strengths to back up it's weaknesses.