Just my two cents
Some context: most of the apps I use, I have tried several different programs before settling on one I like, and here's my criteria;
1. Reliability (greatly outweighs "cutting edge" for me)
2. lightweight, but not at the cost of functionality.
3. Compatible with backends already installed on my gnome system (GTK, Gstreamer, etc.).
So, from your list:
Brasero (works great, never fails, nice drag-n-drop functionality when making mix Cd's and such)
Gedit- I was big on Leafpad being a minimalist, but have come to appreciate the little extras of Gedit, nice solid no-issue program.
Nautilus - excellent
Bleachbit- a must have for me
MC- have never found a use for this, some folks might use it, i'm guessing most non-geeks won't.
Gnome games- this is what I always install for a simple game package when I set-up a friend's computer, everyone likes at least one or two of the games, never any functionality issues either.
Epdfviewer- perfect for my needs, very lightweight and very fast in usage.
As far as image viewer, I have to break with your selections and choose Gpicview, very light and very native feeling, like it's just part of the OS.
Chromium by far favorite browser choice for me.
Gcalctool - perfect
Gnumeric- also excellent
Sound= again I have to break with your choices and choose Clementine, much better than the other half dozen I have tried, works great with Gstreamer, I use this program literally all day every day, has all major internet radio streams already onboard just a couple clicks to play, scans a library faster than any other linux program I have tried.
Video= I agree very much with Mplayer, but I use the SMplayer front-end, runs very very smooth and reliably.
Gnome system monitor- like. no issues.
Htop- I like it, but since top is already on my system, seems redundant to have Gnome system monitor and htop and top.
Gnome terminal- absolutely
The programs I chose for my system are mostly pretty light on required dependencies too, that was kind of a tertiary requirement for me as well, I tend to shy away from installing if Synaptic lists a lot of them.
My main machine has the above mentioned programs, minus abiword and gnumeric, but including Inkscape, zenmap, Clamav and CUPS, it comes in at 1236 packages total right now, compressing to just over 600 mb for a remaster (note: that also includes Nvidia proprietary driver and dkms).
Mama's machine is used very much for work and production, it adds Abiword and Gnumeric, and also Evince (came with something, Abiword I think) Scribus, Gramps, Cups, Jpilot, task-printing-hp, Nvidia drivers and dkms, and also has the non-repo Citrix client installed. It comes in at 1306 packages (not counting the Citrix Xenapp packages), and still compresses to under 700 mb for a re-master.