In Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, the following conversation happens between Charlie and Mildred:

Charlie: Billboards ain’t gonna bring her back, Mildred.

Mildred: Neither is fucking nineteen-year-olds, Charlie.

What did she mean with that line? What does "fucking nineteen-year-olds" have to do with bringing back her daughter?

  • 2
    These questions are more about English language than the movie itself. There are other SE websites specific for English language questions, english.stackexchange.com and ell.stackexchange.com
    – Luciano
    Jun 24, 2019 at 10:22
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    @Luciano It was very unluckily phrased indeed, but after some clarifying edits, this question isn't so much about the English language than about understanding the film, as the answers demonstrate, too.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Jun 24, 2019 at 13:39
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    However, in general I'd agree that not having a good grasp of English can complicate matters here and the site is generally not to replace general language comprehension, which English Language Learners is indeed better suited for. So seeing the trend your questions tend to go into, I'd still suggest thinking about (or listening to) dialogue twice (or activating subtitles if possible) if you didn't get something, to make sure it's really not just you struggling with English and your question is of use for gaining genuine insight into the film.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Jun 24, 2019 at 13:42
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    @NapoleonWilson it looks proper now :)
    – Luciano
    Jun 24, 2019 at 15:03
  • @NapoleonWilson I do not know the consensus on this site, that said I would think that this question is not in place. I haven't seen the film, and could make an educated guess what this sentence is about. I just want to say that allowing such question can lead to an increase of such basic language questions. (propably with declining language understanding). On a side note I fail to see how such "small" questions should be featured in HNQ. Not that you have influence on this.
    – Kami Kaze
    Jun 25, 2019 at 10:52

2 Answers 2


When Mildred says, "Neither is fucking nineteen-year-olds, Charlie," she's referring to Charlie's new girlfriend who looks like she's about 19 years old. Mildred is dealing with her grief by putting up the billboards, and Charlie has dealt with his grief (and probably other issues) by hooking up with much younger women.


Mildred is referring to Charlie's young partner, Penelope (played by Samara Weaving) who is supposedly only 19 years old. The inference is that Charlie's relationship with Penelope was at least partly motivated by his attempt to deal with the loss of Angela.


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