Spatio-temporal data sets are rapidly growing in size. For example, environmental variables are measured with ever-higher resolution by increasing numbers of automated sensors mounted on satellites and aircraft. Using such data, which are typically noisy and incomplete, the goal is to obtain complete maps of the spatio-temporal process, together with proper uncertainty quantification. We focus here on real-time filtering inference in linear Gaussian state-space models. At each time point, the state is a spatial field evaluated on a very large spatial grid, making exact inference using the Kalman filter computationally infeasible. Instead, we propose a multi-resolution filter (MRF), a highly scalable and fully probabilistic filtering method that resolves spatial features at all scales. We prove that the MRF matrices exhibit a particular block-sparse multi-resolution structure that is preserved under filtering operations through time. We also discuss inference on time-varying parameters using an approximate Rao-Blackwellized particle filter, in which the integrated likelihood is computed using the MRF. We compare the MRF to existing approaches using simulated and real data.