It seems like the phrase "get on people's cases" was a bit of a sticking point for you. How about "playfully pick on while reinforcing that your rightness"? Does that phrase work better? :)
I know you've written about your criteria before, but a lot of it was while I was still new to film club and not paying much attention to that stuff. Truthfully, the most I've ever paid attention was when I put together my 1985 list the other day and saw a couple films on it that showed up on more than one yearly list. My method was pretty much to decide that I wanted those "on the cusp" films to be in my 1985 list (using different criteria for each one) because I don't have lists for any of the surrounding years and liked my list as it was. Maybe if I do a list for 1984 or 1986, I'll move some titles around. But, in general, I still prefer wide release in the country of origin as my current parameters. Or maybe just adding an asterisk for those films that could be placed in two different years for various reasons. So this is an old topic for you, but a relatively new one for me, and I'm just forming my opinions about it. Furthermore, I appreciate your interest in the topic because it's made me think about it as well, and it's not something I would have considered worth worrying about otherwise. It was interesting in making my 1985 list (I used IMDB) to see when and where films had premiered. I enjoyed having my horizons expanded.
As for your "why not's," why not? Let's broaden the palette a bit. I liked your eighties albums list based on most listened to. I liked my Steve Guttenberg list written as if I were still 14. I like the Top Ten Woody Allen lists. Let's get crazy with the list-making, why don't we? Film club LOVES lists, after all.