I think what you're proposing has quite a few more "stupid user interface problems" than Totem does. Contrary to what you've stated, buttons do cost something in software: more buttons clutter the user interface and make the program harder to use. How often do you need to go back exactly five minutes? I'm guessing not that often. The slider provides enough control for most use cases. Instead of trying to go back exactly five minutes, why not drag the slider back a bit? Every once in a while you might need to go to an exact minute:second point in a video, but the sacrifice in simplicity isn't worth it for something that can be done with reasonable accuracy with the slider.
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